Environmental and housing issues in a County Durham town are to be addressed through a council initiative.

Durham County Council’s Community Action Scheme (CAS) is being delivered at Spennymoor where it will seek to tackle issues like empty properties and fly-tipping, and to improve health and wellbeing.

The nine week programme will focus on an area covering 540 homes in Craddock Street, Villa Street, Robert Street, Eden Road, South Street, Drake Street, Wear Street, Stratton Street, Baff Street, Clarence Street and James Street.

It will see the council’s Community Action Team (CAT) work with Durham Constabulary, County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service, County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust and environmental charity Groundwork.

The programme is delivered in three phases. The first two weeks are spent speaking to residents and local business people to establish priority areas of work. Members of the public can speak to the team at the Spennymoor Police and Communities Together meeting at Spennymoor Leisure Centre this Wednesday 31 January from 6.30pm.

The team will then spend five weeks delivering the identified improvements  Drop in sessions will be held over the five weeks at which people will be able to seek updates, identify new areas they feel need attention and report any issues. These take place at Spennymoor Leisure Centre on Monday 12 February from 10am to 2pm and Wednesday 28 February from 1pm to 5pm.

The final two weeks of the project will see the scheme reviewed and future objectives set for the council and its partners.

Joanne Waller, the council’s head of environment, health and consumer protection, said: “Our Community Action Scheme has been rolled out to more than 20 towns and villages across County Durham since it launched in 2012, identifying the environmental and housing issues which matter to local people and doing what we can with our partners to deliver improvements.

“Spennymoor is our first programme of 2018 and the drop-in sessions and meetings allow local people to find out what the scheme is all about and tell us what we should be focusing our work on. We’d encourage everyone to come along and have their say.”

To find out more about the scheme in Spennymoor contact the team by phone 03000 261 016 or e-mail communityactionteam@durham.gov.uk

More information about the CAT and its work is also available at www.durham.gov.uk/CAT