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Hampshire County Council backs HIV Testing Week

Hampshire County Council is backing this week's HIV Testing Week in a bid to raise awareness of the importance of being tested, encourage HIV tests, especially amongst those most at risk, and increase the number of early diagnoses.

Over 100,000 people in the UK are living with HIV. Of these it is estimated that 1 in 5 do not know they have the infection and are at increased risk of passing the virus onto others.

Early diagnosis of HIV, timely treatment and support can mean a near-normal life span and better long term health outcomes.

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, said:

Although nationally the proportion of people being diagnosed late has reduced slightly we are hoping this campaign will further encourage those most at risk to get an HIV test.

In Hampshire, not only can people get an HIV test at their local sexual health clinic but they can also access Solent NHS Trust’s Quick Check service which is available at a number of community venues across Hampshire.

– Liz Fairhurst

For information on HIV testing in Hampshire visit HIV Lives website.

Armistice Day: Hampshire County Council remembers

Dozens of staff at Hampshire County Council have paid their respects to the fallen on Armistice Day. They gathered at the war memorial next to the Great Hall in Winchester before carrying out a two minute silence.

Among those paying tribute was Lieutenant Commander Keith Whitehead RD RNR, who has been a member of the Royal Navy Reserve for 29 years, and also a Chartered Building Surveyor working within Hampshire Property Services.

Lieutenant Commander Keith Whitehead RD RNR who works for Hampshire Property Services Credit: Hampshire County Council

“I wear a poppy badge all year to act as a constant remembrance to others and myself of the ultimate sacrifice made by servicemen and women over the years. In particular I want to remember the sacrifice made by my Great Uncle who was a member of the Hampshire Regiment (TA) and who died as a prisoner of war in 1917 while serving in Mesopotamia now known as Iraq.”

– Lieutenant Commander Keith Whitehead RD RNR

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Flood clear up in Hampshire thought to cost £68 million

Basingstoke was one of Hampshire's worst hit areas Credit: ITV News

Hampshire County Council will today receive a report into the recent flooding.

It lists Basingstoke as one of the county's worst hit areas for the high levels of groundwater mixing with sewage which seeped into people's homes.

Some people still haven't been able to return.

The cost of dealing with the floods is estimated at £68 million.

Hampshire resources ready for New Year floods

Hampshire County Council has extra resources ready to respond to the further wet weather and strong winds that are forecast.

The number of highways emergency crews have been increased and tankers are ready to deal with water on the roads.

n the last week highways teams have responded to more than 1,300 incidents of fallen trees and flooded roads across Hampshire’s highway network.

The length of which equates to travelling from Lands End to John O’Groats and back three and a half times.

The County Council's Emergency Planning Team is also prepared and on standby, to support the emergency services and to assist those who need help with emergency situations that may arise as a consequence of the heavy rainfall.

We are in a good position to deal with any issues arising from the predicted wet and windy weather over the New Year. Our teams have given up their Christmas breaks and have been working flat out over the last week to keep Hampshire moving, for which I cannot thank them enough. It is anticipated they will be busy on New Years Day and beyond clearing up after this next bout of bad weather. Our maintenance teams are likely to be very stretched and it will be necessary to prioritise locations."

– Councillor Seán Woodward, Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment at Hampshire County Council

Council help families keep healthy resolutions

A scheme to help families to live healthy lives is starting for five to 13-year-olds across Hampshire from January.

The MEND programme (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do it!) provides ten weeks of interactive fun sessions to promote healthy lifestyles and address overweight issues.

The programme was commissioned to help children enjoy active play sessions as well as learn with their family about healthy food choices.

Parents are invited to change family behaviours such as reducing the amount of time watching TV and setting positive goals.

Gosport mum Rachel Fisk said the programme helped her and her six-year-old daughter who attended the session at Bridgemary School.

She said: "I had trouble saying no to Lily and was giving her portions of food which were too large for her to keep a healthy weight."

Hampshire Dementia Action Alliance launched

The number of people living with dementia is on the rise.

That is why a new community focused response has been launched by Andover Mind and Hampshire County Council.

The concept of a community focused response is so the wider community can develop a better understanding of the condition, so that people who have dementia can live independently.

Around 100 people representing Hampshire businesses attended the launch of the Hampshire Dementia Action Alliance.

Other shops, leisure companies, transport providers, health and social care organisations and charities are also being asked to sign up to the Alliance and pledge their commitment to creating Dementia Friendly Communities.

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8,000 new school places for Hampshire pupils

Hampshire County Council leader Ken Thornber has been outlining the authority's budget plans for the next financial year. It includes spending £165m creating 8,000 new school places to meet the growing demand and get rid of temporary classrooms currently in use.

About £160m will be spent on transport, £6.5m creating 70 child social workers and £4m on elderly care. The council says it can invest in services - when others are making cuts - because its made savings over the past few years.

Wind farms could be banned in Hampshire

Hampshire County Council is considering banning the development of large scale wind farms.

The authority is consulting on proposals which would stop all large wind turbines and wind farms from being built on council owned land.

A new report says that while the turbines provide green renewable energy they have an "adverse impact" on the landscape.