Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Report from the council's AGM and Electors' Meeting

What with all the excitement of the election, a minor family emergency, work and several days of sleep deprivation I haven't had an opportunity to touch on the council's AGM and electors' meeting last week.

Telford & Wrekin Council's plans to build houses on the gymkhana field off Stirchley Road was the main topic of discussion in the electors' meeting and everyone seemed to be of the opinion that building on the field (which is part of the Town Park) was a bad idea and must be opposed.

We have changed the committees on the council this year as there was too much overlap on the Community & Leisure and Planning & Environment committees. Going forward we will have a Neighbourhood Services committee which roughly covers everything the Community & Leisure committee did and the non-planning aspects of the Planning & Environment committee. We will also have a Planning Committee which will only meet when there are planning applications to consider. This year I am on both the Neighbourhood Services and Planning committees, the Personnel committee, Policy Committee and the Emergency committee.

There generally isn't a lot of "regular" council businesses discussed at the AGM because it takes so long to sort out the committees and get through the wads of paperwork but there was time to discuss my proposal to lobby the borough council for a pedestrian crossing at the bottom of Brookside Avenue by Bridgwood where the kids cross the road to get to Lakeside Academy and the shops. I'm happy to say that it was unanimously supported by the parish council and we will lobby Telford & Wrekin for a crossing. It doesn't mean it will happen though but fingers crossed!

The winning team ...

Thank you to everyone who voted UKIP last week in the EU elections and helped the party achieve a historic victory.

This is the first time since 1910 that Labour or the Conservatives have failed to win a national election and the scale of UKIP's victory is even more monumental against the backdrop of a trade union-funded campaign of misinformation, intimidation and violence to try and stop UKIP challenging Labour.

An enormous amount of hard work went into this election campaign and the West Midlands euroregion now has three down to earth, hard working UKIP MEPs representing our interests in the EU parliament.

Jill Seymour MEP, Bill Etheridge MEP and Jim Carver MEP
Picture: Express & Star

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Use your vote wisely: help cause a political earthquake

Polling stations open tomorrow at 7am for the EU elections and close at 10pm.

UKIP has been polling over 50% in the West Midlands in the last couple of weeks and with a Telford councillor - Jill Seymour from Kynnersley - at the top of the list there is even more reason for Telford people to vote for UKIP tomorrow.

The polling station for Brookside is at Windmill School. You should have received a polling card in the post a while ago. If you can't find your polling card then don't worry, you can still vote by visiting the polling station and giving your details to the staff there. If you received a postal vote and didn't use it, you can still go to the polling station in person to vote.

Beware of cheap imitations, look for the £ sign!

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Parish Council AGM and Annual Electors' Meeting tonight

Stirchley & Brookside Parish Council's Annual General Meeting (AGM) is tonight at 7:30pm, preceded by the Annual Electors' Meeting at 6:45pm.

The Electors' Meeting is an opportunity for any elector to come along and ask questions of the parish council or to raise anything that they consider to be of importance or interest to the parish. The meeting is convened by the parish council and the chair of the parish council (or deputy) chairs the meeting but it is not a parish council meeting, it is a meeting of the parish itself.

The AGM is the biggest parish council meeting of the year, where the chair and deputy chair of the parish council are elected, members are voted onto the council's various committees and appointments to outside bodies are made. This year's AGM also includes discussion of the lease for the council's current office, the lease for the council's new offices in the new school, a partnership agreement with community organisers and my resolution to lobby the borough council to put a zebra crossing near Bridgwood to make the crossing point safer for kids walking to Lakeside.

Cats poisoned with antifreeze in Brookside

A number of cats have been poisoned in Brookside in the last day or so, resulting in several deaths.

There were a spate of antifreeze poisonings in Telford in 2010 that didn't coincide with cold weather and were thought to be deliberate poisonings. There are antifreeze-related deaths of cats every year but obviously these occur during the winter when there is a reason to use antifreeze, not in the summer.

There are some distraught cat owners on Brookside at the moment as you can imagine and my advice would be to keep your cat indoors for as long as possible until the source of the poisoning is found. It is, of course, a criminal offence to poison a cat.

You can get advice on the effects of antifreeze poisoning on cats from the RSPCA website.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Pot your own day 2014

Pot your own day is back again this year, from 10-12 outside Stirchley Library.

For those who aren't familiar with Stirchley & Brookside's Pot your own day, you simply turn up on the day, make a donation to charity, pot some fruit and/or vegetable plants and take them home to grow in your own garden or window box. There will be tea and cake, gardening experts to ask for advice and an opportunity to give feedback for the neighbourhood plan which is a statutory planning document that will define what new housing developments in our parish look like.

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Bullies drive Brookside boy to take his own life

By now many residents will have seen the sad news that 12 year old Dylan Stewart from Brookside has died.

Dylan was a pupil at Lakeside Academy and unfortunately he suffered at the hands of bullies for a long time and ended up trying to take his own life. He spent several days on life support which was switched off yesterday. He was breathing on his own for a while but passed away last night.

Lakeside have introduced a zero-tolerance policy on bullying as a result of Dylan's death but you have to ask why there wasn't a zero-tolerance policy on bullying already in place. Some people try and make excuses for bullies - a difficult home life, personal problems - but there is no excuse for making someone's life a misery for your own pleasure or as an outlet for your anger at whatever personal problems you have.

Some of the kids at Lakeside are starting their own anti-bullying campaign and that's likely to be more effective than anything the school or any adults could put together because peer pressure matters to kids far more than the opinions of their teachers, parents or a group of strangers. It may be small comfort for Dylan's parents to know that their son's death has inspired a lot of adults and children not just in Brookside but all over Telford to take a stand on bullying and I hope they do take some comfort in that because I can't imagine what personal hell they must be going through because of the actions of some stupid, selfish children.