Saturday, 29 October 2011

Broxtowe Enews 29th October 2011

Welcome to Broxtowe Enews, brought to you by the Liberal Democrats and edited by David Watts, the leader of the Lib-Dem group on Broxtowe Borough Council. A special welcome to the new readers that we have this week.

1. Future Development Sites

I was delighted on Wednesday night to move an amendment at the full council meeting to delete the Toton site next to the A52 from the list of preferred sites for future development in Broxtowe. I also explained some of the difficulties that the council find themselves in with Government regulations, which are forcing us to look at the possibility of redrawing the green belt boundary. The amendment was passed unanimously, which was great news. The Toton site was the subject of a significant amount of lobbying from local residents, and they deserve tremendous credit for having this site removed. Needless to say loads of people are now trying to claim the credit (I even had an email from someone in Poland claiming the credit) but really it was the efforts of the local residents which have borne fruit. It’s not simply a numbers issue, but the quality of the arguments that they presented which won the day.

2. A Bee Friendly Council

A second success for me on the council this week was the passing of a motion banning the use of neonicotiniod pesticides by the council and also banning their use by council house tenants and allotment holders. I previewed this last week but we were able to widen the terms of the motion to make it more comprehensive than I’d originally anticipated. Existing tenants and allotment holders will not be caught by the ban, although I hope that they will voluntarily follow it, but it will be a condition for any new lettings. Neonicotinoids are a relatively new form of pesticides, and there is fairly strong evidence that they are linked to the massive fall in the size of the bee population. Given that one in three items that we eat comes from crops pollenated by bees this is a significant issue. I’ve already received enquiries from other councils in the East Midlands wanting to follow suit. We will be making information available for those potentially affected to explain any steps that they should take.

3. Small Business Support

It was three out of three for me on the council on Wednesday when I also proposed a motion to help small businesses in the difficult financial situation at the moment, which was also passed unanimously. What the council has now committed to do is to ensure that we make every effort to pay all invoices within 20 days, rather than the usual 30, to help firms with their cash flow.

4. Trading Standards Scam

I’ve been asked by two separate people this week to pass on the following message:

A card is posted through your door from a company called PDS (Parcel Delivery Service) suggesting that they were unable to deliver a parcel and that you need to contact them on 0906 6611911 (a Premium rate number). DO NOT call this number, as this is a mail scam originating from Belize. If you call the number and you start to hear a recorded message you will already have been billed £315 for the phone call. If you do receive a card with these details, then please contact Royal Mail Fraud on 020 7239 6655.

5. Theft

Having mentioned the message above I’ll also mention that my family have been the victim of thieves this week. Someone forced an insecure gate at the side of my house on Thursday and stole two bikes, one adult (my wife’s) and one child’s (my daughters). My seven year old daughter is heart-broken as the bike was her birthday present from my wife and I last year. I’d like to thank Conservative councillor Mick Brown, from Mick Brown’s Cycles in Eastwood, for helping sort out a new bike so quickly.

6. Bulldog Security

Carrying on the crime theme the following message was sent from Notts police on Tuesday:

Bulldog Security sales people are operating in the area. It has been reported to us that they are making false statements about Nottinghamshire Police. That the police will not attend alarms, that neighbourhood watch is of no use whatsoever and that the police no longer attend due to lack of funding.

Nottinghamshire Police do not in any way endorse this company and have referred such claims to Trading Standards. The company have been contacted and are withdrawing their sales staff from the area and will be conducting an internal review.

Nottinghamshire Police do respond to sequentially confirmed alarm systems.

Neighbourhood Watch schemes in this area have provided early alerts for many suspicious people in the area, the local neighbourhood policing team has responded quickly and the individuals have been located and requested to leave the area. There has been very positive results for the scheme and if your area is not operating a local scheme then please contact PCSO Chris Archer, who can assist with setting one up locally.

Please report any suspicious salespeople in the area on the 0300 300 9999 number, or 999 if an emergency.

7. Green Energy at the Council

Broxtowe Borough Council are looking at a range of schemes to introduce green energy to its buildings. I’m hoping that we will opt for a fairly extensive scheme of PV panels on the roof. I’ll keep you informed of how that goes.

8. Road Safety Campaign

The County Council have launched a campaign to encourage road users to wear bright clothing when out on dark nights. They also want to remind cyclists in particular of the need to use lights when out after dark. This is a campaign I wholeheartedly endorse.

9. Awsworth Primary School

Congratulations to Awsworth Primary and Nursery School who have been given the British Councils International School Award for fostering links with schools in other countries. This is an excellent achievement.

10. Safeguarding Children

Chilwell Olympia is to run a course for football coaches and trainers working with young children on the issue of Safeguarding Children on 5th November at 10am. The course costs £15 for borough residents (£25 for non-residents) and details are available by ringing 0115 917 3572.

11. Trick and Treat

If anyone wants a "No trick or treat" poster these can be downloaded from the councils website at

12. Clocks

Don’t forget that the clocks go back one hour tonight.

Thanks for your support for this newsletter. As ever any feedback will be gratefully received.