Category Archives: Medworth

Uncontested

Uncontested

I had one of the best canvassing days EVER today.

The sun was shining and literally every single person I spoke to door-to-door was supportive and friendly.  I canvassed for six hours and covered over half of my ward and it was absolutely brilliant.  I’d like to thank so many people that I spoke to that were all so nice.

When I got home I began to get word of the list of candidates that were standing in Fenland.  I had wondered if we might get some “no contests” but I never thought there would be so many.  All across Fenland, many of my colleagues will be elected unopposed.

In a way I am a little disappointed, as the unofficial news is that I will also be elected unopposed. I’m sad because I had been really hoping one of these so-called “Independents” was going to stand against me.  I would have liked to see how that worked out for them.

I’m sorry to the people of Medworth that no other candidate has put their name in.  You deserve a choice and that has been denied to you.  I would have been happy to campaign for re-election on my record.  Indeed I have already put out a newsletter, a letter and a leaflet across the ward, and canvassed about 75% of the ward, so I was certainly up for it.  It appears that the various other parties and “independents” couldn’t find somebody willing to take me on.  It appears they were all frit, as there’s no sign of them.  Or perhaps they are just supportive of the work I do?  :)

But I’m pleased for my Town Council colleague Michael Hill, who is Deputy Mayor and can now be as assured as you can be with such things that he will be the Mayor in May.  I know he is going to be a great Mayor – again!

Once more, thanks to all the people who had said they were going to vote for me.  It was truly humbling.  There’s no need to do so now, but I will work hard every day for the next four years on your behalf.  Thank you.

Campaign Time 2019

Campaign Time 2019

Well it’s that time again.

The time when we all go out and ask people to come vote for us.

The time when the opposition and the Usual Suspects start sneering, lying and slating the Conservatives – while claiming that it is the other way around. :)

The time when the Wisbech Standard begins its weekly campaign to get somebody, anybody, elected who isn’t a Conservative.

The time when people nobody has seen in their ward for the last four years turn up and start pretending that they are a better alternative than the people who work all year around.

Never mind.

The sun is shining.  The air is fresh.  And the people I am meeting in my ward as I canvass are very pleasant and very positive.

I have every faith that the people in Wisbech broadly know the truth, no matter what smears the collective opposition try to run with.

As ever, it will be what it will be.  We shall see.

See you all soon, on the doorstep.  Looking forward to it!

 

 

Update:

So apparently the fairly simply blog post (above) is “ghastly and nasty.”  :)

But none of the comments on the various private Facebook groups he frequents are?  None of the personal remarks about me, or Sam Hoy?  None of the comments by anybody on the Hatefest forum are “ghastly and nasty?”  Just my little blog, above.

If ever there was clear-cut evidence of exactly what I said, it’s right there.

People are right to point to the low esteem in which the Old Press is held, nationally and locally.  And this is why.

Wisbech Get Together

Wisbech Get Together

Wisbech Get Toegher

Medworth & Clarkson Ward Surgery, October 2017

Medworth & Clarkson Ward Surgery, October 2017

Just a quick reminder that my Councillor Surgery is on today, in the Angel, from 3PM – 5PM.

Drop in for a chat, to report issues, to suggest ideas, or just to say “hello”. Hope to see some of you there.

Boogie Tots, QMC

Boogie Tots, QMC

I went along to meet the Boogie Tots today at the Queen Mary Centre.
 
Boogie Tots is an activity group for young children, where their parents can take them for some music, dancing and gentle exercise.
 
It was brilliant actually. Holding the attention of a roomful of very small children is incredibly difficult, but the Boogie Tots team made it look easy. They wouldn’t be out of place as the hosts of a kids TV show, in my opinion, and their enthusiasm and joy was infectious. All the young children were clapping and dancing and generally having fun and even the parents were joining in.
 
If you have a tiny tot and would like to join in, I highly recommend paying Boogie Tots a visit. The interaction and activity will be incredibly healthy for the kids, and the company and chat seems pretty good for the adults too!
 

Stormy Teacups

Stormy Teacups

Two off-duty Citizens’ Patrol members encountered a situation today near Tillery Fields.
 
Some teenagers were having an almighty to-do, screaming at each other, crying, threatening to kill one another, swearing and being broadly loud and unpleasant. Onlookers were aghast at the scene which seemed to be escalating rapidly.
 
The WCP members had a difficult decision. On the one hand it was kids being kids to some extent, but on the other some of the older boys were being very aggressive. It the patrollers ignored it, and then something bad happened, they would feel terrible.
 
In the end, they tried a polite and friendly intervention, just as normal members of the public. The teenagers remained aggressive to anybody who got anywhere near the unfolding drama, with two lads in full “peacock mode”.
 
In the end, the decision was taken to call the Police, as it was unclear if the situation would get worse and what might happen. To their credit, Police were there within a couple of minutes, and very ably deescalated the whole thing.
 
Nice work volunteers and very very nice work Police.

Flood Wall Cracks

Flood Wall Cracks

Recently some people raised concerns about cracks in the flood wall on the North Quay.

It was reported and has now been inspected.

This is the response, FYI:

“Thanks for the information regarding the cracks in the brickwork on the North Quay.

We have inspected the brick wall and have concluded that we do not appear to have anything to worry about – there appears to have been some slight differential movement where the wall changes direction. We will however monitor this in the future and take remedial action if required.

You will have noted that the repair work to the damaged wall on the south Brinks has been completed. Work is about to start on the replacement of the copings on the north Brinks wall on the 7th August (there will be traffic lights for several weeks during daytime).”

Onyx Court Car Park

Onyx Court Car Park

I had the meeting with Circle today, as discussed in the previous update.

Circle are trying to balance the competing views and interests of residents, who support permit-parking, and other residents/shoppers/businesses who value the free public car park that the area is currently used for.

As reported last week, Circle are still being very reasonable. They have rolled back from an immediate implementation of a Permit Only plan in that car park (although they will be continuing it in the other areas that they specified.)

They have looked at all information received from myself and local businesses and car park users and have monitored the car park and noticed that it is rarely full.

I found the company to be open and helpful. They have chosen to place the plan for that specific car park on hold until the end of August or into September, with a view to trying to find a compromise which will satisfy both sides and not dramatically disadvantage anybody.

So, there’s no panic in the short term, and I am reasonably confident that the outcome will be a fair balance between the needs of both groups who are interested in the future of this car park.

I will be having another chat with them towards the end of August and I know they also intend to talk to those local people who have personally objected to the proposal. I am impressed with Circle’s approach to this and I think it bodes very well for the future.

Medworth & Clarkson Ward Surgery, July 2017

Medworth & Clarkson Ward Surgery, July 2017

Just a quick reminder that my Councillor Surgery is on today, in the Angel, from 3PM – 5PM.
 
Drop in for a chat, to report issues, to suggest ideas, or just to say “hello”. Hope to see some of you there.

In regards to St Peters Car Park

In regards to St Peters Car Park

I had no idea the work was happening as the Ward Councillor. Nor did any other Town Councillor to the best of my knowledge. I was as surprised as everybody else.

This morning I have phoned the Officer in charge of the work and spent much time on phone to him getting the information as to what is going on.

I will try and explain what is happening as per what I have been told. I am as frustrated by it as everybody else.

What I have been told:

I am told that this work dates back to a 2002 plan which was agreed and then could not continue because the funding dried up. The Officer have been doing bits and pieces of the work ever since whenever some funding became available.

I am told that this was was considered basically routine maintenance and that is why they did not notify Town Council or any of the Councillors in Town. They did, however, notify the In Bloom volunteers, they say. I am also told that the flowers/plants planted by Street Pride were funding by the office doing the work originally, that all the plants with some worth have been safely removed and can be replanted. Trees that are being removed have been identified by a professional survey as requiring removal as they are sick, or “not thriving.”

I am told that the removal of the bays has been on the cards since 2002 and that it is part of a complete redesign of the layout and markings which will improve the car park and make many more spaces available as the space and layout is currently not optimal. The work also includes relining and resurfacing sections of the car park as part of this.

I am also told that the Officers are very surprised that there has been an outcry over this as they considered it routine work and that they felt that had let the In Bloom team know in good time and also explained to them that the plants would be removed and replanted.

Finally, I am told that the intention is to make new flower bed areas once the work is finished – putting them in the places where the cars cannot park in the new layout.

What I have said:

I have explained that I am very unhappy about not having been notified of this work as the local Ward Councillor and I am sure my other Councillor colleagues feel the same. Had we known in advance we could have warned that they had misunderstood the feelings of local people. We could also have helped them negotiate a plan that would not upset our local volunteers who have spent so much time working on making the car park look nicer.

I have asked the Officer to put everything he has said to me in writing, and when I receive that I will share it with you all.

I did write to the Officers last night asking them to hold off any work until we had time to look at what was going on. Unfortunately, most of the work was done very quickly and those islands are already flattened and bare – ready for their completely removal. The Officer has informed me that none of the larger islands around the edge of the Car Park are being removed, although a piece is to be “cut off” of the edge of the one in the middle which splits the car park in two.

It is very frustrating that this has happened without me being given any notice whatsoever. At a bare minimum I should have been notified long in advance, and in my opinion so should the rest of Town Council. We were not. I cannot turn back the clock, but I will be making it very clear that this is unacceptable and must never, ever happen again. I will write to the Cabinet Member at FDC in the strongest terms, and also raise this as an issue at Wisbech Town Council.

I feel very sorry for the hard-working volunteers who have spent so much time trying to make the car park look nicer. They are true champions of the town and it is, in my opinion, unfair that this has happened in this way. But it appears to boil down to a misunderstanding by Officers as to the level of upset it would cause – one which I have endeavoured to put them straight about.

I am as unhappy as anybody – I live near the car park and use it every day. I liked the islands of green too. But the Car Park *does* need relining and surface work. I just wish they’d considered the possible consequences of the action rather than relying on an old plan without any consultation.