Bold plan unveiled as Council Tax frozen

 Tackling traffic congestion in Evesham, creating new sporting destinations and cutting household waste are among a host of new promises unveiled by Wychavon to further improve the district.

Councillors also pledged to freeze Wychavon's share of the Council Tax bill for the third year in a row, as they approved the new Council Strategy at a meeting of the Executive Board on Wednesday (5 February).

The plan focuses Wychavon's spending and resources over the next four years on three key priorities – Supporting People, Strong Economy and Places and Sustainable Environment.

Schemes in the plan include:

  • Working with partners to deliver a white water facility in Pershore and a multi-purpose cycling attraction in Evesham including BMX pump track, mountain bike trails and simulated road circuit by 31 March 2024
  • Holding a transport summit in 2020 to deal with the issue of traffic congestion in Evesham
  • Reducing the average household black bin waste by 10% by 2024 and setting up at least five community fridges across the district to reduce food waste
  • Investing £100,000 over four years to promote the growth of Wychavon's low carbon economy
  • Working with partners to create and start to deliver master plans to help revitalise Droitwich, Pershore and Evesham town centres
  • Investing £180,000 over three years to encourage businesses to take on apprentices
  • Working with partners to create 10 hectares of new wetland and 30 hectares of habitats to improve biodiversity

The campaign to reduce litter and plastic use across Wychavon is also set to continue for another four years while the project to improve life chances in Droitwich West will also carry on for another two years.

Wychavon is also committing to reducing carbon emissions from its own operations by at least 50% by 2030. Full details will be released as part of Wychavon's Intelligently Green Plan which will be published in April.

Action will also be taken to boost community transport, tackle loneliness and social isolation and to create Wychavon's first health and wellbeing hub.

There is a pledge to deliver 1,000 affordable new homes by 2024 and an extra £12,500 a year for three years for Citizens Advice South Worcestershire.

Cllr Bradley Thomas, Leader of Wychavon District Council, said: "This is a bold plan that will protect and enhance our environment, continue to grow our economy and invest in the things that matter most to our communities.

"Thanks to our successful Grow, Save, Charge plan we are able to do all this while freezing our share of the Council Tax bill to help our hard-pressed residents keep more of their money in their pocket to spend with local businesses."

The Executive Board's strategy and budget proposals still need to be considered and approved by Full Council on Wednesday, 19 February.

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