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Rochford Square Plans

February 15, 2008 by · Leave a Comment 

Comment from the Rochford Independent on the article in the Echo

So the shop keepers of Rochford Square don’t want it pedestrianised and they have been supported by 500 customers.  That should be enough for the RDC Chief to withdraw this idea.  The benefit of parking in the Square is not so much that it is free but it is convenient for the shops.  Even free parking elsewhere would kill off the idea of just popping out to local shops and the Somerfield close by.  Might as well go to the super centre supermarket then….perhaps.  And if Rochford is going to have free parking somewhere then the traders of other places will want free parking as well?

Banning all cars won’t work here

TRADERS  are  worried                  By JOHN GEOGHEGAN

for   their   livelihoods   if                        john.geoqhegan@nqe.com

plans   to   pedestrianise            owner of Home Plus hard-

Rochford’s historic mar-            ware shop, in West Street,

ket square go ahead.                 and   a   member   of   the

About 500 shop owners     Rochford Chamber of Trade

and customers have signed                            committee,

a petition opposing the idea,         He said: “Lots of people

which was announced by           who have signed the peti-

Rochford District Council           tion say the plan is stupid

last week.                                 and, if they can’t park in

They are concerned the       the square, they won’t both-

move could result in no                  er to stop in Rochford.

more free parking in the               “Pedestrianisation won’t

town centre, which could          attract people. Rochford is

drive shoppers away. At the     not the place for pavement

moment, people can park in          cafes and art and  craft

Market Square free for one                                 shops.”

hour.                                      Rochford District Council

The petition was organ-           has been asking residents

ised by Mike Lucas,  64,            what  improvements they


 

would    like    to    see    in        wanted to pedestrianise th

Rochford and Hockley town    famous square in the hop

centres. The deadline for          it would boost tourist num

the consultation is today.                     bers in the town.

Ken Massow, 62, who runs       Mr Cutthore said: “The

R J Yeo jewellers, in West         concerns are really about

Street, said: “Every time          the taking away of the fre

the square’s been closed to             parking in the square,

parking, business has dete-         “Some traders have said

riorated.”                            to me if we find somewhere

However, Ian Dane, 47,        else with free parking nee

landlord of the Kings Head     the town centre, it will take

pub, in West Street, has          away some of those fears,

backed the plan.                         “We want to bring moi

He said: “I think it will do       business    to    a    revive

a lot of good for the town       Rochford town centre area

and local businesses. Ped-           want to take the traders

estrianisation   seems    to       with us as much as we can

work well in other market           An exhibition of the ear

towns.”                                  consultation results will 1

Council   leader    Terry       held in March before more

Cutmore said the council          final plans are drawn up.

Evening Echo – Who’s behind phone box graffiti?

September 21, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

Who’s behind phone box graffiti?
By Michael Clarke

Graffiti vandals have been paying tribute to late Aussie adventurer Steve Irwin by spraying his image on walls and bus stops.

The images, created by spraying over a stencil, have appeared since the naturalist died after being slashed by the barb of a stingray’s tail.

A service in memory of Irwin took place in Australia yesterday.

His cheeky face has appeared at a bus stop in White Hart Lane, Hawkwell, amongst a handful of other locations.

Community police officer Steve Joynes said: “His face has appeared with several slogans such as Steve Irwin Lives’ and the date he died.

“It’s a lot more creative than the usual mess that appears and may give some people a smile.

“However, we cannot condone this.”

Vandals have also sprayed a life-size silhouette figure of a man about to pounce from a telephone box in Main Road, Hawkwell.

PC Joynes said: “I’ve seen it while driving at night and it looks so realistic – it looks as if someone really is inside the telephone box. Quite a few people have commented on it.”

Criminal damage, and graffiti in particular, has actually been on the decline in Hockley and Hawkwell.

Incidents fell from 125 between August 2004 and August 2005, to just 45 since September 2005.

PC Joynes and his colleagues attribute the drop to a series of new activities designed to keep youngsters occupied, such as football matches, netball tournaments, paintballing, go-karting, PlayStation evenings and even a pamper session for the girls.

He said: “We are trying to look at anything locally we can use to divert the lads’ and the girls’ attentions away from just hanging around and mucking about.

“It is giving the young people something to do – we think that’s important.”

11:12am today

Financial Concerns over Parish Council Decision

September 19, 2006 by · 2 Comments 

Some years ago the council tax raised by Hawkwell Parish Council was much lower than it is now.  If memory serves me correctly it was about £50,000 per annum and when the Spencers and Magnolia Open Spaces were taken over the  costs increased to the high 80’s and now over 100,000.

So when the Council decided to take over the Glencroft Open Space, I was concerned that the costs were fully understood before the land was taken over rather than discovered as the project proceeded.

When Hawkwell Parish Councl took the decision to take over the Glencroft Open Space on 12 June 2006  this was made without any presentation of the way it was to be managed and by implication the costs that will be incurred on a permanent basis together with those additional capital costs of plant and equipment that will be required,

As the Open Space is being taken over from Rochford District Council it would have been appropriate to find out exactly what current costs are being incurred by RDC.  This has not be done.

I supported, with another 6 Councillors, a Motion on Notice to rescind the Council decision made on 12th June regarding the Glencroft Open Space.

Unfortunately the vote to protect your financial insterests was narrowly lost 8/6 and the project will proceed on a hand to mouth basis with the Parks Committee asking for money as required.  What this will do to the figure raised as council tax I do not know.

This is the letter I sent to all councillors before the meeting in an attempt to get them to not commit unless the costs were known. Read more

Echo Article – Expansion of Southend – Threat of Rochford/Southend By Pass looms

September 17, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

2,000 new homes for New Ranges
Exclusive By Steven Blaakman

Up to 2,000 new homes could be built at the New Ranges weapons testing base in Shoebury.

Consultants are proposing a vibrant new town with a tree-lined main avenue, a central park and the possibility of a landmark tower block.

Investment from big companies and the University of Essex could also create more than 3,000 new jobs, consultants Llewelyn Davies Yeang believe.

A light rail system transporting residents to nearby shops and facilities could be built along the main avenue.

The project would also include a new road to the north of the site, the catalyst for the long-awaited Southend outer relief road. Read more

Abolition of The District Councils

May 18, 2006 by · Leave a Comment 

John Prescott now longer has the ODPM and David Miliband has moved on. Several senior civil servants are no longer involved.  It is rumoured that the Government does not wish to take on some County and District Councils.  The White Paper will now be published towards the end of October.



Recent election candidates for District Councils might find that the losers have the last laugh almost immediately as their office will most likely abolished with the District Councils as early as 2008 by the Labour Government.

The Labour Government is even thinking of calling off the next District Council elections due in 2007 to make way for early abolition of the District Councils. Read more

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