Sunday, 7 April 2013

Broxtowe Enews 7th April 2013

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

1. Bramcote Lane Closure
From tomorrow there will be tram works on Bramcote Lane in Chilwell and so it will be closed to traffic in both directions at Sandby Court for the next two months. I’ve had a query already from a reader about how they can access the doctors surgery during this period and I’m checking on that. If anyone else is affected by this let me know and I’ll include you in the answer when I get it. There will be diversions for the 14, 36 and 36A buses during this period as well.

2. Changes to Beeston Bus Station
A new configuration for the bus station in Beeston will come into force later on this month. That was originally planned for tomorrow but has been put back, and will probably start on 22nd April. I’ve put details of this on the Broxtowe Lib-Dem web site at

3. Field Farm Planning Application
One of the most contentious planning applications to be considered by the borough council in recent years, that of plans to develop Field Farm in Stapleford, will be debated at the council’s Development Control Committee on Wednesday evening. The meeting starts at 7pm and we are anticipating a large turn out so if the public gallery is full there will be an overflow facility in the old council chamber with a video link to the main hall.

4. County Council Elections
Nominations have now closed for the County Council elections on 2nd May.  The full list of candidates should be available tomorrow. To be registered in time to vote in these elections, an application for must be completed and returned to Electoral Services by Wednesday 17thApril 2013. The deadline for applications to vote by post in this election is 5:00pm on Wednesday 17th April 2013 and applications to vote by proxy must be received by 5:00pm on Wednesday 24th April 2013.

5. Deliverers Sought
Can you help? I’m the candidate for the Lib-Dems for Chilwell and Toton in the County Council elections and I’d be really grateful if I could have some extra volunteers to help get my leaflets delivered. If you can spare an hour to help sometime this month I would be very grateful. If you live elsewhere in the borough and are able to help I can put you in touch with your local candidate. We’d all be grateful for the assistance.
6. Electoral Services
I’ve received the following message from the Elections department at the borough council:
“I would like to make you aware of two organisations offering services to the public for a fee which is of concern to us as both voter registration and opting out of the edited register can be done by anyone free of charge.

The first company,, offers to make an online application process with the form being printed by and then being sent to the elector with a label containing the Electoral Commission's address rather than to a person's Electoral Registration Office. The company also offers to check completed applications. The website charges a £30 fee for their service as well as offering a premium rate phone service costing £1.53 per minute, plus additional network charges, to manage a person's voter registration.  The Commission is firmly against this service, as registering to vote is free of charge, with no associated costs to complete and return a form to an individual's Electoral Registration Office. They want to make sure that no one uses this or any other service which charges for something which is straightforward and free.  The Commission have contacted the company to ask them to cease their activities and also informed the Office for Fair Trade and Phone Pay Plus (who regulate premium call numbers) so they can establish if there are any legal and regulatory issues which need to be investigated.  They will shortly be issuing a press release urging people not to use the service and reminding everyone that that they can register to vote for free by visiting, calling 0800 3 280 280 or contacting their local authority.

The second company, Opt Out UK, are offering to make an application for individuals to opt out permanently of the edited register for a fee.  This is of some concern as this can also be done at no cost by anyone.  To request a permanent opt out written notice must be sent by an individual asking the Electoral Registration Officer to stop processing the personal information relating to them for direct marketing as soon as possible by not including their details on the next and future versions of the edited register until further notice for as long as they remain continuously registered at their address.”
If anyone has any concerns regarding registering or opting out of the published registers please do NOT pay a company to do anything for you. Either contact the council direct or contact me and I’ll sort it for you free of charge. It’s part of what councillors do.

7. The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist
That has to be the oddest heading I have ever used in this newsletter. It’s  actually a play that’s on in Chilwell. On Friday 12th April at 7.30pm Townsend Productions presents the company’s two hander version of Robert Tressell’s The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists , at Chilwell Arts Theatre, Chilwell School, NG9 5AL. Using songs of the period, movement, comedy and characterisation to create the spirit and clarity of the political message, the play shares with its audience a year in the life of a group of painters and decorators, as they renovate a three-storey town house for Mayor Sweater. It traces their struggle for survival in a complacent and stagnating Edwardian England. These workers are the "philanthropists" who throw themselves into back-breaking work for poverty wages in order to generate profit for their masters. Tickets £10 (£6 Concs) from the Box Office on 07861 1308044 or 0115 925 2618. Tickets also available from the ViTal Charity Shop, High Road, Beeston or on the door.

8. Paradiso Cinema
On Friday April 19th at 7.30pm Paradiso Cinema presents “ARGO” At Chilwell Arts Theatre, Chilwell School, NG9 5AL. Based on true events, Argo chronicles the covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis. On November 4, 1979, as the Iranian revolution reached its boiling point, militants stormed the U.S. embassy in Tehran, taking 52 Americans hostage. But, in the midst of the chaos, six Americans managed to slip away and find refuge in the home of the Canadian ambassador. Knowing it was only a matter of time before the six are found out and likely killed, a CIA "exfiltration" specialist named Tony Mendez (Ben Affleck) came up with a risky plan to get them safely out of the country. A plan so incredible, it could only happen in the movies. Tickets on the door £5, (£4 conc)

9. Village Ventures
On Sunday April 21st at 7.30pm Village Ventures presents “The Churchfitters” at Chilwell Arts Theatre, Chilwell School, NG9 5AL. This Brittany based group of musicians from England, Ireland and France have taken UK audiences by storm with their unique and energetic performances. Outstanding vocals, an astonishing array of instruments, a large dose of humour, a measure of eccentricity and an abiding sense of fun, are the band's recipe for truly entertaining performances.  “I can honestly say that they are the must musically inventive quartet that I have seen in decades” – Dave Pegg, Fairport Convention. Tickets £8, £6 (conc) call 0115 925 2698 or 07772053412 or on the door.

10. Councillors Allowances
The media sometimes like to have a pop at councillors for being overpaid at the public’s expense. May I assure you that this is not the case in Broxtowe. I’ve just received my P60 for this year for my work as a councillor, and it shows that I was paid a total of £10,307 for the last financial year, from which tax of £2,061.40 was deducted. I don’t claim any other expenses on top of this. Given that I sit on the cabinet and I’m the leader of one of the political groups I am one of the highest paid councillors on the borough, and I hope everyone will agree that we provide value for money.

11. This Newsletter
Last week I asked for readers views about whether to change the format of this newsletter or not. I was absolutely overwhelmed by the level of response. Whilst both points of view (yes to change and no to change) were present in the responses the huge majority of readers said that they wanted it left exactly as it is. Your wish is my command and so the newsletter will remain in this format. Whilst talking about the newsletter may I mention that we now have the largest readership that we have ever had and are just 12 readers short of a significant level. I’d be delighted if we could reach that soon. We don’t advertise this newsletter much and the majority of the readers have heard about this by word of mouth, so if you like this may I ask that you be kind enough to mention it to other people.

12. Broxtowe Park
Broxtowe Park is actually in the city of Nottingham rather than in Broxtowe, but it borders onto Nuthall. The city council have now earmarked a large part of this as a site for new housing, a move which is being opposed by Nuthall Parish Council. There are some legal wrangling’s going on at the moment and I’ll report how these pan out when I hear.

13. Beeston Shop Mobility
At the cabinet meeting last Tuesday the borough council agreed to relocate Beeston Shopmobility. This was based in the multi-storey car park until that closed and since then has been in a shop unit in the square. That is not ideal as there is no easy vehicle access, and so the council have agreed to relocate Shopmobility to Cavendish Lodge in Devonshire Avenue. This has car parking and is just on the edge of the town centre and so hopefully will be a big improvement on the existing facilities.

14. Gritters
Hopefully the warmer weather over the past couple of days means that winter is eventually coming to an end. However it has been a long one and Notts County Council have announced that they have carried out a record number of gritting runs this winter. The 130 runs that they performed beats the previous record of 108 set two years ago.

As ever thank you for your support for this newsletter, and any feedback is gratefully received.
Best wishes
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