Jesse’s Ross Gazette column: Singing the praises of local citizens

After the weighty constitutional issues tackled in my last column, it is a delight to return this week to local issues, and sing the praises of local citizens. 

First stop:  the new Ross Action Bus, which I was honoured to help launch in front of the Market House the other day.

What an achievement it has been to raise all that money, and how much the new bus will benefit local people!

Rosemary, David, Jill, the Ross Action Committee, the drivers, the escorts, local businesses, local voluntary groups and membership organisations, and Ross residents have all come together to make something really special happen, and I warmly congratulate them all.

Huge thanks must also go to Jo and Charlotte and this newspaper, who chose the Action Bus as their Charity of the Year, and who have endlessly inspired others to support it.

But I am also thrilled by the news last week that the Government has announced £15 million in funding for our new university project in Herefordshire.

I vividly remember calling for a university in Herefordshire in 2009, and some of the looks of incredulity and doubt that I got at the time!  

Well, thanks to Karen and David and Janusz and their incredible team of volunteers, now it’s going to happen.  Their plans are revolutionary: to bring together the very best practice around the world and transform how we teach engineering and technology in this country.

The new university will include the whole county in its plans.  Already the team are working on ways to provide bursary and scholarship funds for local students, so they can be supported while they study. 

I believe the university will transform not just the educational but the economic, demographic, cultural and social life of this county. That’s an ambition anyone can support.