Saturday, 20 November 2010

Broxtowe Enews 20th November 2010

Welcome to Broxtowe Enews, brought to you by the Liberal Democrats and edited by David Watts, the leader of Broxtowe Borough Council.

1. Chilwell Meadows estate

Yesterday I attended a meeting chaired by Anna Soubry at the council offices where we had all the developers who have been involved in this development present. For those of you who don’t know, the estate was built several years ago but the principal developer went bust, meaning that the roads and pavements were never finished. By getting everyone together we seem to have been able to overcome all the remaining problems, and the builders have promised that they will start work on the pavements on 6th December, completing the roads by the end of February, weather permitting. After many years of delay this is extremely good news for residents. I’m delighted to have been involved in bringing this to a conclusion, but I want to give the credit to AAnna Soubry whoo provided the impetus to get this resolves.

2. Bramcote Hills Golf Club

There is still no news on the eventual disposal of the land here but in the meantime the council have repainted the building (it is currently derelict) to cover the graffiti. I think that this has made a massive improvement to the area.

3. Stapleford Walk In Centre

Our campaign to prevent this being closed is proceeding full steam ahead. We now have more than 800 people on the Facebook page and so far the PCT have received back more than 150 consultation responses and 100 emails. This is unheard of for a consultation like this. We are still collecting signatures on the petition and hope that many more people will send in responses. The sheer weight of numbers here will have an effect. One point we have raised in the campaign is that the figures produced by the PCT don’t add up, and I understand that they are about to publish revised financial information.

4. Governance of the Council

The last Government, shortly before leaving office, passed new laws meaning that the way we currently run the council, with a leader and cabinet appointed by the council, can no longer be used. We have run a public consultation over the last few months about which of the two options we are now allowed to use is preferred and about 78% of people voted for the option with the minimum change, which is to have a leader appointed by the council who then appoints the cabinet. When people were asked why they preferred this many people said that they were happy with the way that the council was run at the moment and didn’t want any major changes. Thank you for this vote of confidence in us. The new system will come into force from May, immediately after the local council elections.

5. Council Tenants

A survey of satisfaction levels in Broxtowe council house tenants gave the council a 78% satisfaction rating. This is pleasing as the national average in 69%, but it also means that there is still room for improvement. I will be talking to the officers shortly about how we can get this figure higher.

6. Hetley Pearson recreation ground

The council is shortly to install a new park and children’s play area at the Hetley Pearson recreation ground, the land next to the old Beeston Rugby ground. This is being paid for by the developers of the estate. I have instructed the officers coordinating this that local schools are to be consulted to see what children want in the play area.

7. Community Action Trust Meetings

The next CAT meeting in Attenborough will be on 24th November at the Lucy & Vincent Brown Village Hall at 7pm. The next Stapleford South East CAT will be on 23rd November at Stapleford Care Centre at 7pm

8. Neville Sadler Court, Beeston

I attended a meeting at Neville Sadler Court yesterday with local residents. Also present were Anna Soubry MP and Nick Palmer. The residents of this sheltered housing scheme are understandably unhappy as part of the complex is to be demolished to make way for the tram. Nick and Anna both said that they were against the route, so it fell to me to be the pro-route spokesperson. I don’t know if they expected me to hide from this because of where I was but I won’t do this, and will hopefully always be honest with people about what I feel. There was actually a strong degree of agreement between all of us that the route argument was now over, and that what we had to do on behalf of the residents was to get them certainty about timings and exactly what is involved and ensure that they were properly supported during the move to new premises. I think most residents appreciated this, although one man was clearly only there for an argument. He was busy shouting and being abusive to Anna until I pointed out to him that she was on his side, so then he shouted at me instead.

9. Health and Safety at the Council

The borough council has a very good health and safety record, but I discovered recently that councillors have no oversight into this whatsoever. I have now changed this so that councillors will now receive health and safety monitoring information.

10. Footfall figures in Beeston

The average footfall figures for the number of shoppers in Beeston for the last few weeks have been lower than 2009, primarily because one week saw a drop of 23,000 people compared to 12 months ago. Someone asked me recently how this was monitored and I said I would find out and come back to them. I’m afraid that I then lost the email so I couldn’t respond personally, but the answer is that it is monitored by sensors on the High Road

11. Attenborough Nature System

There will be an exhibition of embroidered landscapes by artist Anne Harrison at Attenborough Nature Centre throughout November.

12. Greasley Recreation Park

Greasley parish council have decided to revamp their recreation park, costing have £30,000. This is despite opposition from local residents who suffer anti-social behaviour from users of the park and who have been asking for steps to be taken to prevent this.

13. Gritting

The county council will now provide information on what is being gritted and when on twitter at I’ve criticised the county council enough in the past but this seems to be a good idea so well done to them.

14. Freemen and Aldermen meeting

Next Thursday the borough council will be holding a special meeting to award the titles of freemen or aldermen of the borough to eight local residents who have contributed substantially to the life of the borough. This is a tradition which the council usually observe in the final year of every council.

15. Eastwood Age Concern Fund Raiser

Eastwood Age concern have a sixties night fundraiser on 3rd December. It will take place at the Greasley Welfare and features a live singer. Tickets cost £6 and are available from 01773 787130.

16. Fair Votes

The Fair Votes campaign have just launched a new video featuring veteran Ralph Hill, aged 86, explaining why he is voting in favour of the fairer voting system in the referendum next May. This is available here -

As ever thank you for your support for this newsletter. Word of mouth remains our best form of advertising and many of the people who read this newsletter heard of it from other readers. Thank you for this. Any feedback is gratefully received.