Acle Academy and Acle Parish Council are delighted to announce the creation of two Youth Ambassador roles, to increase liaison between local young people and the Parish Councillors.
At the January 2013 Parish Council meeting, Councillors voted in favour of inviting two Youth Ambassadors from the Academy to attend future Council meetings. The first two Ambassadors attended Monday’s Parish Council meeting. They, in turn, invited Councillors to attend future School Council meetings at the Academy.
The idea of creating the Youth Ambassador role has stemmed from early stage recommendations from the Acle Village Masterplan which has been progressing over recent months.
The Acle Village Masterplan seeks to find ways of supporting and enhancing the village’s economy and community through implementing small scale but tailored projects and initiatives. Research undertaken as part of the Masterplan by Cambridge based consultants Ingham Pinnock Associates identified that Acle needs to ‘close the gap’ between the younger and older populations of the village. This attractive and successful village contains a higher proportion of elderly residents than many other towns in the area and is also the location of a large and successful Academy. During consultation exercises, residents expressed concerns about the lack or perceived lack of integration between these different age groups and were keen to see this addressed.
Although the Village Masterplan is not yet complete, introducing Youth Ambassadors to the Parish Council seemed like a project that could be implemented as soon as possible and begin to make a real difference to relationships between different age and interest groups in the village. Tim Phillips, Headteacher said, “Acle Academy is committed to creating opportunities for students to develop their leadership skills and has flourishing Year Councils and a School Council. We welcome this opportunity to strengthen our partnership with village representatives and to help our students understand a little more about the decision-making processes of local government.”
The Village Team is currently developing a number of other projects and initiatives with Ingham Pinnock Associates that will enhance and support the local economy and community. The projects will be a mixture of short and longer-term interventions, but importantly will be deliverable in terms of both in resource and funding. The Village Team hopes to start delivering projects over the course of the summer.
The Acle Village Masterplan is funded by Broadland District Council (BDC) as part of their recession mitigation fund. Ingham Pinnock Associates were appointed by the BDC Economic Development team to undertake research and consultation in Aylsham, Acle and Reepham to identify ways in which the local economy can be supported and enhanced.
Ingham Pinnock Associates has set up Village or Town Teams to steer the projects in Aylsham, Acle and Reepham. These Teams are made up of representatives from the Parish/Town Council, BDC, NCC, local businesses and local stakeholder groups or bodies such as the local High Schools etc. The Acle Village Team is made up of representatives from Acle Parish Council, BDC, The Broads Authority, local businesses, Acle Society, Acle Academy, Acle Village Archive, Acle Lands Trust, Acle Youth Club and Acle Recreation Centre & Social Club.