Thank you to Cllr Jan Goold, who arranged and chaired a progress meeting this morning to discuss the Sherwin island and footbridge. She and Cllr Martin Plackett have been tireless in their pursuit of seeing necessary maintenance of the island and cleansing of the footbridge. Regular readers will know this is a subject close to my heart being a local resident and regular user of the bridge. For a reminder of the story to date, click here.
The 90 minute meeting was held at Beeston Town Hall and attended by representatives from Broxtowe Borough Council (BBC), Highways England (HE), our MP, Anna Soubry’s office and myself and Tony Smith, long term residents of Bramcote.
The positives from the meeting were:
- All agreed that action needs to be taken – no convincing of the issues was necessary.
- Since 1 July, Highways England have restructured the area including Bramcote and there is no longer a “middle man” as they now have asset ownership. They still use contractors to carry out the work but their new contract arrangements allow for far more flexibility and efficiency. Inevitably, it is early days and there have been a few teething issues, but the potential for a more effective, efficient service is evident.
- Cllr Goold has found local interest in sponsoring the island (or parts of). BBE have arrangements in place with an established team in the City Council to assist with this.
- Communication between BBC and HE should now improve as HE have more control and have committed to seeing improvements.
- HE are very hopeful that the footbridge should be cleaned by Christmas. They will consider if removing the screen, initially put up to give nearby residents’ privacy, is preferable.
Long term improvements to the landscaping of the island is still dependent on securing the vast funding. However, the meeting was a positive reflection of the efforts of all concerned to realise Cllr Goold’s vision (which I believe many Bramcote residents share) of an attractive gateway to Broxtowe.