News From David Watts, Broxtowe Liberal Democrat Leader, 21 September 2014

David-WattsDavid Watts writes on :1. Core Strategy, 2. Employment Figures, 3. Neighbourhood Planning Issues, 4. Fire Engines, 5. Stag Recreation Ground, Kimberley, 6. Acer Court Care Home, 7. Tesco, Toton, 8. Cars in Giltbrook, 9. Meet a Guide Dog, 10. Chilwell Police Surgeries, 11. Bin Collection Calendars, 12. New Water Pipes, 13. Pastures Road Recreation Ground, 14. Attenborough Nature Reserve.

1. Core Strategy
The first matter to report this week is that the borough council has approved the core strategy for the borough for the next fifteen years. This includes a whole range of things, including measures to tackle climate change, employment and development of our town centres. The one controversial part of the strategy is that it sets out the areas where development will be permitted over the plan period, and includes three main areas for development, at Boots, at Toton and at Field Farm in Stapleford. I did read claims from other politicians that the Liberal Democrats were spilt over this scheme but nothing could be further from the truth and we voted unanimously in support of the scheme. Although parts of this proved controversial I sincerely hope that we can now move forward as a council to ensure that we get the very best for Broxtowe over the next few years.

2. Employment Figures
The new employment figures published this week made good reading for Broxtowe.
More than 70% of the eligible workforce are now in employment, and the claimant rate in the borough has dropped to just 2.6%. These are the best figures for many years and the employment rate here is ahead of the national average. Youth unemployment has also dropped, as it has across the country.

3. Neighbourhood Planning Issues
Following on from the adoption of the core strategy three parish councils, Greasley, Nuthall and Eastwood, have announced that they will be preparing neighbourhood plans. This means that the detailed planning work designing the local area will pass to the parish councils, Stapleford and Trowell Parish councils are expected to follow suit shortly. This is something that I have strongly encouraged and it was when I was the portfolio holder for planning that we put the mechanism in place to make this possible. It is always better when local people have the say on what happens in their area.

4. Fire Engines
The Fire Brigade are likely to cut a fire appliance from the Highfields Fire Station in Beeston. I have opposed this cut as they have already reduced numbers there from three to two, and leaving just one fire engine would not be enough. I know a lot of other people have opposed this cut but it looks like the cuts will be forced through.

5. Stag Recreation Ground, Kimberley
It was disappointing to read this week that the Stag Recreation Ground in Kimberley has been the subject of an arson attack. It is not long since the park was refurbished and to hear that some of this has been spoiled is a great shame.

6. Acer Court Care Home
I’m sure that many people were disturbed to read reports this week about the police being called in to investigate reports of abuse at the Acer Court Care Home in Nuthall. The firm that own the home say that five members of staff have been suspended and the County Council have decided to stop sending residents to the home. No doubt more detail about this will emerge in due course.

7. Tesco, Toton
A PR move by the Tesco store in Toton seems to have backfired. The store has been undergoing a refit (as those of us who shop there will know) and this has caused some disruption for local residents. The store therefore decided to give free loaves of bread to those residents but unfortunately this hasn’t found favour with many of the recipients. Whilst I understand what Tesco were trying to do I’m not sure that giving people a free loaf of bread was actually a particularly good idea.

8. Cars in Giltbrook
The police have reported that nine vehicles have been broken into in the Giltbrook and Awsworth area over the past 30 days. The police have therefore asked residents to make sure that their vehicles are secure.

9. Meet a Guide Dog
Children aged from 5 to 10 have the opportunity to meet guide dogs at a free event organised by Beeston Library. The event is on Saturday 27th September from 10.30 until 12.00 and children will be able to stroke the dogs and find out about the work that they do.

10. Chilwell Police Surgeries
The neighbourhood policing team will be in Mountbatten Way on Thursday 25th September from 7.30pm until 8.30pm, and then on Gwenbrook Road on Sunday 28th September from 3pm until 4pm. Residents are invited to raise any issues that they .

11. Bin Collection Calendars
Regular readers may recall that last year the Labour Party announced that Broxtowe would stop issuing bin collection calendars. They did this without any reference to the Liberal Democrats and we forced them to make a U-turn on this.
This year we have agreed that the bin collection calendars will be included in the next edition of Broxtowe Matters, the bi-annual magazine delivered to every house in the borough. We have insisted that the front cover will highlight that the calendars are there so that they do not get missed.

12. New Water Pipes
Severn Trent Water have now completed a £280,000 scheme to replace two kilometres of water pipes in the Sunnyside Road area of Chilwell. The pipes there were very old and Severn Trent took the very wise decision to replace them before there was a major leak. As I was unable to live in my house for six months after we were flooded following a Severn Trent pipe bursting last year I think that this was an excellent decision to take.

13. Pastures Road Recreation Ground
The Borough Council and Veolia Environmental Trust have teamed up to fund
£31,000 of improvements to Pastures Road Recreation Ground. £10,000 o the money will be coming from Veolia and the remaining £10,000 from the borough council. A circular footbath, new seating and build planting will be part of the programme.

14. Attenborough Nature Reserve
Earlier this year a new sand martin nesting bank was completed at the nature reserve. The first breeding season is now over and it looks like the work has been a complete success. Although it was thought that the birds may overlook the site this year as it was so new they have in fact taken to it in record numbers.

As ever thank you for your support for this newsletter. Any feedback is gratefully received.

Best wishes

Follow me on Twitter @davidwatts12.

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2 Responses to News From David Watts, Broxtowe Liberal Democrat Leader, 21 September 2014

  1. 13.     Pastures Road Recreation Ground
    The Borough Council and Veolia Environmental Trust have teamed up to fund £31,000 of improvements to Pastures Road Recreation Ground. £10,000 o the money will be coming from Veolia and the remaining £10,000 from the borough council. A circular footbath, new seating and build planting will be part of the programme.

    Thank you for mentioning this as it is great news for the residents of Stapleford North Ward, you may not know but this is a Stapleford Community Group project, we have been working alongside Groundwork Greater Nottingham and we carried out the full consultation. As can be found via the following link:

    The project for this park has been awarded £21,000 from Veolia and Broxtowe Borough Council agreed a further £10,000. That is a total of £31,000 and we are involving children from a local school to help plant the bulbs around the park. As mentioned via this link:

    We also carried out another public consultation which was for the Ilkeston Road Recreation Ground, you can find details here:

    And what a result we got here, a grant for £49,999 was awarded to Stapleford Community Group for this project with info here:

    The 2 projects have been a great success and now 2 parks in Stapleford North Ward are going to be improved,  we would like to thank Councillor John McGrath who kindly got Broxtowe Borough Council to print out the leaflets we needed for the consultation, especially after Stapleford Town Council refused to help us.  For some reason they didn’t think the projects were anything to do with us. Despite repeatedly letting them know they were. 

    The parks in the ward are going to look great and the 2 awards make it all the worth while. The consultation involved leafletting all the properties around the 2 parks, spending many days talking to people on the parks and running online surveys. 

  2. john longdon says:

    Well done Richard as chair person with the support of the all the members of Stapleford Community Group championing and organizing the money for these improvements to the parks.


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