Friday, 8 May 2015

The last day as District Councillor for Thatcham West!

 May 7 2015 was to be my last day in post as District Councillor representing Thatcham West.

I got involved in local politics in 1979, the year after we moved to Thatcham. A resident knocked on our door asking us to sign a petition urging the council to speed up the completion of a pavement in Bowling Green Road, as a motorbike had hit a pushchair in the road killing the baby. 

Following this terrible incident I joined Thatcham Town Council and later became Mayor of Thatcham. More recently I moved to West Berkshire Council and took on the role of Opposition Spokesperson for Highways & Transport. On May 7 2015, I lost my council seat for Thatcham West. 

I have met some amazingly hard working people over the years who dedicate their life to helping others in our community and I would like to thank them all for making Thatcham a better place to live. 

I have had a fantastic time in local politics although most of the time it was about getting the job done and less about politics! I would like to dedicate this blog to the baby who was killed in 1979. 

Those sight-lines Thames Road - Bowling Green Road!

Cutting back the vegetation to improve the sight-lines for motorists coming out of Thames Road onto Bowling Green Road!

Motorists have a difficult time getting out of Thames Road onto Bowling Green Road at the best of times with the speed of traffic coming from their right. I called in the contractors to cut back the vegetation but they didn't cut it back enough so I got the hedge trimmer out and cut back a lot more! Now the sight-lines to the right are much improved and road safety is less of an issue. Job done!  

Friday, 6 March 2015

Flood protection measures north of Tull Way

Following the major floods in 2007, a planning application has been submitted to West Berkshire Council for a flood bund north of Tull Way.

"This bund  will hold water back temporarily at times of exceptional volumes of surface water run-off, which the drainage system cannot immediately cope with. The bund will then release the stored water into the existing drainage network over a longer period, thereby allowing time for better management of these exceptional volumes of water."

Congratulations to all those members of the Thatcham Flood Forum based at Thatcham Town Council, who have worked so hard  over many months to get this project underway. I am sure that all the residents who were flooded in 2007 (my family included) will be extremely grateful.

Parents alarmed at school traffic - Parsons Down Junior School

Vehicles park illegally at entrance to Parsons Down Junior School

Just having a look at the situation

That's what is says!

This is where it is!
This could be a new area for parents to park or drop off their children, between the school and Lower Way. I will speak to the highways department at West Berkshire Council and ask them to carry out a feasibility study.

This Park & Stride facility for Parsons Down Junior School, delivered by the Conservative Administration, based at the Discovery Centre is not working. Parents complain that shoes and clothes get covered in a yellow slime! 

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Proposal for a BMX Track at Henwick Sports Ground

Potential site for BMX Track at the south side of the Sports Ground.
Earlier in this blog I reported on the family and friends of Tom Slater gathering at the sports ground on 19 May, to give 29 cyclists a big send off for the long fund raising ride to Paris. The Tom Slater fund has exceeded all expectations and has now reached well in excess of £30,000. The money will go to local projects including the desire for a BMX Track at the sports ground.

The Joint Management Committee (JMC) responsible for running the sports ground is expecting to consider a proposal to site a BMX Track on the south side of the sports ground.

 Henwick Sports Ground supports major sports activities for the community.


Pound Lane Play Area gets thumbs up for new public footpath!

From this!
To this!
Pound Lane Open Space has recently taken delivery of a brand new public footpath and Cllr Jeff Brooks was there to give it the thumbs up as soon as the tarmac was dry enough to walk on! Now parents can walk their children to school and visit the play area without walking through mud. The Mayor of Thatcham Cllr Gary Johnson has also been part of the hard working team turning the area into a major facility for the community. We now have a modern play area for the children, an adult gym, football pitch, dog walking area and a meadow for wild flowers to grow. A swing gate has also been installed at the eastern end of the footpath to make it easier for disabled access. After many years of planning and fund raising, Cllr Johnson is applying for the prestigious Green Flag award in recognition of the community facility and being Mayor of Thatcham of course he will be making arrangements to invite local parents and children to join him to celebrate the award by cutting a ribbon on site!      
Taking a few tips from the experts!

The tarmac is spread out evenly
Then rolled out

Friday, 3 October 2014

Residents campaign to 'Save Lower Way Field'

 Lower Way field, a green lung, looking across to the Nature Discover Centre, Moors reserve and SSSI. This field has been used to hold boot sales and fun fairs and dog walkers have also enjoyed the use of the field over many years 

West Berkshire Council has consulted residents living around Lower Way, asking for their comments on a proposal to build 87 houses on a greenfield site outside the settlement boundary between Lower Way and the Nature Discover Centre, close to the Moors reserve and SSSI in Thatcham. The residents have held campaign meetings and set up a web site and a facebook page - search "Lower Way Field", to keep everyone informed.
A 2,371 signature petition objecting to the development has been handed in to the Council and 269 letters of objection have also been received. My co ward member Cllr Jeff Brooks and I have been working closely with local residents supporting them in the campaign to save this green field from development.

Collecting petition signatures at Thatcham Broadway.
Another banner put up by a resident in Lower Way

Beautiflul scenery looking from the field to the Moors reserve and SSSI