Saturday, May 13, 2006

E-mail Update

Here's a copy of the news from my latest e-mail update to residents of the ward, if you are not on the list but would like me to add you to it please leave a comment below.

Planning Appeals – 2 Ropley Road and 163 Harewood Avenue

The Planning Inspector visited both these sites last Monday, May 8th. We now have to await his decision with regard to the original applications. Speaking to the Planning Department they remain hopeful of the applications being refused. Keep your fingers (and everything else) crossed!

The renewed application to the council for 2 Ropley Road does not appear on the list for consideration at Monday’s planning meeting. This means, if it is put forward, it will probably be considered at the meeting in June, which is scheduled for Monday June 19th at the moment. I will keep you up to date.

Planning Application – Hayes Avenue

Although not in our ward, the planning application to build a small estate of bungalows in Hayes Avenue, Kings Park, is very close to those people living in Thistlebarrow Road and at the King’s Park end of Littledown Drive and Littledown Avenue. Most importantly, it is close enough to Old Littledown to allow a precedent if accepted. For this reason I’ll be attending the Planning Board meeting on Monday, along with my colleagues from Springbourne, to object to it.

Telephone Masts

You will remember from my last e-mail that the proposed telephone mast for Castle Lane East by Tesco has been refused. I have heard that there may be a fresh application coming to site the mast in a similar location but rather than have it as a stand alone structure, rather to disguise it as a lamp post. I’ll keep you up to date with this application and will continue to oppose it’s positioning at the front of Tesco. There are better places within a short distance that are much further away from St Peter’s School and local houses.

The Planning Board will consider alterations to the Council’s policy on mobile masts on Council land on Monday, this should make it much easier for the Planning Department to suggest alternative sites that are further from residential locations to the mobile operators.

As part of this it is hoped that the O2 mast constructed on the Wessex Way by Queen’s Park (and the Vodafone mast approved for the same location), both of which are close to homes in Littledown Drive and Thistlebarrow Road, can be moved into Queen’s Park, further away from local housing and the Park School.

Anti Social Behaviour/On Street Car Sales/Illegal use of garages for Car Repair

These are issues that seem to be particularly effecting the area around Corhampton Road and its surrounding area at the moment. I’m pleased to say that we seem to have been successful in getting the Eastern European car breakers who were causing such a problem at the bottom end of Warnford Road to move elsewhere.

However there are still a number of problems persisting in the area. I’m therefore organising a mini ‘summit’ of the police, council officers responsible for ASBO’s, on street car sales, housing and environmental health and representatives of the local residents who have made complaints to see what coordinated action can be brought to bear.

Some of you will already know about this, if you are aware of a problem in this area and would like to be involved then please let me know. The meeting is likely to take place in the middle of June, probably at the Town Hall.

Littledown and Iford Forum

The reformed Littledown and Iford Forum are going to hold their first meeting in their new guise. It's scheduled for 7pm on Thursday, June 8th. The venue will be St Peter's School on Holdenhurst Avenue. I do hope as many local people as possible come along, it's a chance for residents to hold both the Council and your councillors to account and to feed back to both.

Well done to the chairman, Cyril Baker and the committee for all their hard work in getting the Forum off the ground again. Please do try and support them.

Ward Improvement Fund – Your Feedback Please

You may be aware that each ward receives a total of £5,000 in each financial year for improvements in the ward. These need to be ‘capital projects’, i.e. lasting changes. Up to the end of last year there had been no expenditure from this fund, therefore £15,000 had accumulated to be spent. Since then £200 has been given to the local Neighbourhood Watch for the purchase of UV Marker Pens and £1,000 towards the yellow line painting in Durrington Road (I have to say I was opposed to this use, but without the donation the lines would not have been painted).

The expenditure requests need to be put forward by councillors, although the Forum should play a role in suggesting projects. For example, I am working on putting forward a request for money to be used to pay for a new path to be built from the steps leading in to King’s Park at the end of Petersfield Road linking to the nearest path running across the park.

In the absence of a Forum meeting for a couple of weeks, I would appreciate your feedback on a request I’ve been asked to sign off. This is for £880 for a new notice board at the Skate Park in King’s Park. I’m not convinced this is a use of the money local people would support.

Therefore I would appreciate your input, with a short YES response if you think the money should be used for the notice board, or NO if you don’t. Not a scientific sample of Littledown and Iford Residents, I know, but there are now almost 500 of you on this list which is a fair sample of people.

Please also let me know if you have any projects you think would appropriate for use of the fund.

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