Friday, October 30, 2020

News: Large Rotherham housing development in line for planning approval

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Outline plans for a 450 house development in Rotherham could be approved next week.

Planning officers are recommending that members of the Council's planning board approve the plans for former Greenbelt land at Whiston, subject to a number of conditions.

Over 300 letters of representation have been received.

Rothbiz reported last year that landowners had worked together to submit an application having previously secured a residential allocation for the nearly 50 acre site off Lathe Road / Worry Goose Lane at Whiston through the development of the borough's Local Plan.

The site consists of two arable fields divided by a bank and hedgerow and sits between existing housing and Sitwell golf course.

Applicants, AE Waddington, R Parkes & V Foers, have worked with JVH Town Planning and agents, WYG, on a masterplan including apartments, townhouses, semis and detatched houses.

A resident's action group, the parish council and the local MP have objected to the plans with issues raised including traffic impact and flooding and drainage issues.

To satisfy transport officers at the Council updated studies were required. They have led to the conclusion that multimillion pound improvements are necessary at the nearby Worrrygoose roundabout. The junction already operates at capacity with queues and include road widening, bus lanes and new crossings.


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Planners conclude: "The Sites and Policies Document removed the site from the Green Belt and allocated it for ‘Residential’ purposes. It forms allocated Housing Site H34 and is located within a suitable distance from local facilities. As such, the proposal is acceptable in principle.

"The scheme is acceptable in terms of highway safety, and the indicative plans and details submitted indicate that it is acceptable in terms of provision of open space, drainage, ecology and landscaping as well as other general amenity issues identified above. The scheme is considered to be sustainable and has notable benefits in terms of market and affordable housing provision and associated social and economic benefits arising from such provision.

"Development in this location will support the ongoing delivery of services and facilities within the local area and provide much needed market housing to meet Local Plan targets for housing development within the Plan period to 2028."

Councillors are due to discuss and vote on the plans on November 5.

Images: Google Maps

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News: Auction date for Rotherham retail parade

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A Grade II listed retail parade built on the site of the College of Jesus in Rotherham town centre is heading for auction again.

2-6 Effingham Street is described as an investment opportunity and is set to go under the hammer next with auctioneers Allsop, with a guide price of £600,000 - £650,000.

The same property was up for sale with JLL in 2017 with a guide price of £1.1m and failed to sell at auction in 2019 from a guide price of £850,000.

The opportunity includes the freehold of four well configured retail units with separately accessed office accommodation above.

The 8,000 sq ft of retail space is let by national retailers Greggs, Harvey & Thompson and The Cash Shop. Timpsons has recently taken the decison to excercise a break clause and close down.

The upper floors are currently vacant and are being advertised with the potential of conversion into residential units, subject to planning.

The sales brochure shows that the property brings in £92,950 per annum.


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The property was constructed in the 1930's and provides a retail parade comprising of four retail units at ground floor, ancillary accommodation on the first floor and office accommodation on the second floor. The property is Grade II listed, and is within the Rotherham Town Centre conservation area.

The property, along with the large B&M Bargains unit that surrounds it, are built on the site of the former College of Jesus.

In 1482, Thomas Rotherham, the priest who was appointed Archbishop of York and Lord Chancellor, oversaw construction of the Chapel of Jesus on the south side of All Saints Church in Rotherham and the following year saw work start on the Chapel on the Bridge. Thomas was also responsible for the College of Jesus on the site of his birthplace, accommodating church choristers and grammar school teachers.

Following the suppression of chantries in 1547, the college buildings were converted to a mansion, before becoming part of the College Inn. For many years College Yard / College Square was a focal point of the town; large crowds gathering to hear the proclamation of new monarchs, the declaration of election results and on other public occasions.

Parts of the college building survive incorporated into later buildings. The remnants are notable as the earliest surviving brick structure in South Yorkshire and formed part of a fundamental element in the development of Rotherham.

The walls of the college were repeatedly altered before being incorporated into present structure dated 1930 and by the architects, Flockton of Sheffield. They were thought to be lost but were re-exposed during internal remodelling in 1984 but are now encased.

A 17th Century doorway from college buildings was re-erected in the nearby Boston Park.

Allsops website

Images: Acuitus

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Thursday, October 29, 2020

News: AESSEAL achieves net zero carbon emissions in the UK

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Rotherham-based AESSEAL plc has reached a major environmental milestone by achieving net zero carbon emissions in its UK operations.

This achievement covers all scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions plus those associated with business flights.

The Templeborough-based company, which designs and manufactures mechanical seals and support systems, is now on target to achieve global net zero GHG emissions across all its locations worldwide by 2029.

In light of its accomplishment AESSEAL® has launched a global campaign - Betterworld – to drive collective action to mitigate climate change across all industries.

It has developed the Betterworld.solutions web site to demonstrate how sustainable policies and practices can lead to net zero carbon emissions without negatively impacting on productivity or profit.

To meet the United Nations target as part of the Paris agreement to limit global warming to 1.5C, and avoid serious negative environmental impact, it is calculated that GHG emissions around the world must drop by roughly half by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050.

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Chris Rea, Managing Director of AESSEAL, said: “I believe the move towards net zero is not a matter of choice for industry - it is an urgent imperative.”

“AESSEAL has shown that it is possible to make a valid contribution to the UN target to reduce global warming but we cannot do this alone. There has to be a collective effort across all industries to embed sustainability in company ethos, strategies and practices, as well as in product design.”

“Betterworld.solutions is our first step in supporting other industry executives who wish to join us to secure a more sustainable future for the planet.”

AESSEAL achieved UK net zero carbon emissions by:

- Continual improvement in line with integrated management systems and its certification to ISO 14001 and ISO 50001 for key operational sites
- Programmes of training and awareness to improve employee understanding of climate change and behavioural impacts on energy use
- Driving down energy use by adopting energy saving technologies including high efficiency compressors, building management systems, intelligent controls, LED lighting and voltage optimisation
- Purchasing all remaining electricity on zero emission at point of generation tariffs
- Fleet replacement programme encouraging drivers to select lower emission vehicles

To offset residual emissions for the 2019 reporting period the company purchased carbon credits to support two Gold Standard emissions reduction projects.

A project in the Lango sub-region of Uganda helped to identify and repair broken boreholes, providing communities with access to a clean and healthy local water supply, while removing the need to consume energy by boiling water to drink.

It also supported Hydrologic, a Cambodian social enterprise which supports the local production of ceramic water purifiers. This helps more than a million families access clean and healthy drinking water, without the need to boil it indoors – a situation which was also contributing to pollution-related respiratory and heart problems, as well as contributing to the deforestation of Cambodia.

The AESSEAL approach and data was verified using the independent assessment body SGS. The company is currently calculating its scope 3 emissions for its entire value chain, both up and downstream.

Chris Rea added: “Sustainability is central to our product design and we believe that any scope 3 emissions would be outweighed by the vast reductions in energy and water consumption our products provide to industry. In fact, if we looked at categories 11 and 12 of the GHG protocol we’re confident that it will show net negative carbon emissions overall.

“This makes us extremely confident of achieving net zero carbon emissions across our entire global network by 2029 which, fittingly, will be the 50th anniversary of AESSEAL.”

AESSEAL website

Images: AESSEAL

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News: Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber appointed as Kickstart gateway organisation

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Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber is helping employers from across the Sheffield City Region to inspire the next generation to take the first step on their career ladders after being appointed as an intermediary to the Government-backed Kickstart programme.

Launched at the beginning of September by the Department of Work and Pensions, Kickstart aims to connect young people with businesses, by providing paid work experience opportunities which are funded by the government.

Designed to help improve the life chances of young people who have been unemployed for more than six months, the scheme is designed to help business owners overcome skills shortages within the workplace with the long term aim of job creation.

Since its appointment, the Chamber has received high levels of demand from business owners working across the Sheffield City Region and within less than a month, it has helped businesses to offer over 120 work placement opportunities.

Developed to help improve the life chances of young people aged 16-24 who have been unable to secure permanent employment, the scheme provides paid work experience for up to six months and aims to help youngsters to become work ready, as well as going on to participate in apprenticeships or future training opportunities.

As part of the Kickstarter scheme, the Chamber acts as a Gateway Organisation between employers and local job centres, who will match suitable candidates with work experience opportunities. Each work placement is advertised through local job centres, and wages are funded by the Government for up to 25 hours per week. Businesses can also claim up to £1500 towards the costs of equipment and training.

The scheme is open to all businesses based in the Sheffield City Region and businesses do not need to be a member of Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber to take part in the programme.

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Joada Allen, President, Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber said: “The impact of Covid-19, Brexit and an uncertain economic climate has meant many businesses have placed recruitment decisions on hold. The Kickstart programme is a win-win for all involved.

“As a Gateway Organisation, we will be able to help South Yorkshire’s SME community to help young people benefit from a valuable chance to play their part in helping to shape the workforce of the future. We’ve seen high levels of interest in the scheme, illustrating how many employers recognise the importance of inspiring and encouraging the next generation.

“The scheme offers a chance for young people to find out more about the many varied career opportunities on their doorstep and will hopefully act as a stepping stone to realising their potential.”

Kickstart is a £2 billion fund, created by the Department of Work and Pensions aimed at young people aged 16-24 who are in receipt of universal credit and deemed to be at risk of long term unemployment.

Alexander Stafford MP for Rother Valley has called on businesses to get involved. He said: "“We cannot allow young people to be left behind as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Schemes like this will be vital for creating jobs and giving young people the skills needed to access them.”

“I’m delighted that this Conservative Government is putting young people are the heart of its plans to build back stronger after the pandemic, and hope as many as possible in Rother Valley are able to take part.”

Images: DWP

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News: Engineering experts launch tech venture to help businesses improve capability

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New software dubbed the ‘Fitbit for manufacturing’ has been developed by FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics, a new tech start-up that has grown out of the University of Sheffield’s globally recognised Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC).

This new Manufacturing Execution System, which is now being tested with Yorkshire companies, will help UK manufactures improve shop floor productivity by unlocking Computer Numerical Control (CNC) data and insights that can be turned into actionable information.

FourJaw began as a research project with financial support from the Royal Academy of Engineering and is the brainchild of AMRC Commercialisation Manager Chris Iveson and Machining Project Engineer Robin Hartley.

The team has worked with Sheffield based technology company The Curve who has increased the product usability by developing an app to present the data.

Chris Iveson, Founder and CEO of FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics said: “Many manufacturing companies are struggling to understand what is happening on their shop floors because performance is difficult to measure in any detail.

“This is why we have developed our offering as ‘software-as-a service’ which will mean firms adopt accessible data without a huge upfront cost.”

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Robin Hartley, Founder and CTO of FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics added: “It’s common to find average machine utilisations of around 50% across all machines on a manufacturer’s shop floor, which makes locating a troublesome component on an individual machine a difficult task.

“The system which we have developed is a massive opportunity to augment the technical excellence of UK manufacturers with the world-beating productivity that modern technology enables.”

Paul Ridgway, CEO of The Curve added: “Productivity in the current market is key to the viability of any business, helping free up resource, lower costs and ultimately beat competitors.

“The analytic solutions FourJaw are providing are incredibly important and it’s been fantastic to help make this accessible to the market and to help them in their journey of establishing their business.”

The AMRC’s Deputy Head of Digital, Jon Bray, says: “This is a beautiful example of what can happen when digital meets manufacturing. You can only get this kind of breakthrough when you bring really, really good software guys into close collaboration with really detailed engineering knowledge to interpret what the software is telling you. Sheffield has both these skill sets in spades.”

FourJaw website
AMRC website

Images: FourJaw

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