Who will run or even own Mill Hall in the future?

November 4, 2022 by · Leave a Comment 

As you may know Rochford District Council has been holding confidential meetings with public stakeholders about progress with The Expression of Interest (EOI) which is a Decision by RDC as to who will run or even own Mill Hall in the future.

I did ask those people if they could tell me but they could not because it was confidential !!

After much lobbying RDC an Officer has finally provided a P&C presentation to us Councillors.

We cannot share this with the general public but further due diligence is ongoing by Council Officers and Cabinet Members and we are advised that The Cabinet will make a Decision in December.

For our part we are going to make sure that we, and other Parties on The Council, can ask questions at The Overview and Scrutiny Committee in December BEFORE The Cabinet meet to make a Decision several days later.

Will RDC require any of the Mill Hall refurbishment to be paid?

October 30, 2022 by · Leave a Comment 

Will RDC require any of the Mill Hall refurbishment to be paid?

From The Echo – “TWO leisure centres have been kitted out with state-of-the-art equipment as part of a £700,000 investment and an extra £300,000 set to be spent in coming months.

Operator Fusion Lifestyle has carried out a complete overhaul of equipment at both Rayleigh Leisure Centre and Clements Hall Leisure Centre, Hawkwell, to the delight of leisure centre users.

Identical state-of-the-art equipment has been added to both centres including spin bikes, cardiovascular machines, fixed weight resistances machines, free weights, and functional training equipment.”

So The Conservatives have the best vision for the local community?

October 29, 2022 by · Leave a Comment 

Cloud Cuckoo Land.

What SPIN did we get this week? Formal Questions put to The Conservative Leader by Tory Councillors. Genuine Questions? Why Then? Well at least one led to a Pre-Election article in the Echo about investment at Clements Hall Leisure Centre by its outsourced contractor AND it showed “a clear demonstration of the Council’s commitment to the health and wellbeing of our residents.”

The Council has invested nothing. But it holds Reserves at record levels without justification.

But The Council needs to invest at Clements Hall with the constant complaints from residents about the Swimming Pool environment and the changing rooms every time Tory Councillors publish how much has been invested in Gyms. And worst of all The Council admits there is a lack of support facilities for the disabled.

The contract must be coming up for renewal shortly. YES. So will that be when The Council wrestles money for Swimming and support for the Disabled from Tenders?

In my view probably not. Why? Because an investment would have been made in Swimming already if it were profitable. With the regular rounds of eye watering investments in Gyms that must be where the profit is.

The ONLY way there will be new investment in Swimming is if a new contract is primed with money from The Council. From the huge Reserves.

A couple of million needs to be earmarked now in the coming Budget so that it is not spent on NEW COUNCIL OFFICES at The Freight House where increased construction costs and funds from property sales won’t happen now at The Mill Hall site.

Instead of SPIN that is a better vision for the local community.

Warm Spaces Update

October 20, 2022 by · Leave a Comment 

Councillor Deborah Squires-Coleman (Rochford District Residents Proposer) and Councillor Arthur Williams (Conservative, Seconder) are putting forward a formal proposal to RDC Full Council on 25 October for total grant funding for organisations of £5000 for individual applications of up to £500 to help fund Warm Spaces this winter.

We hope that all Members will support this in the Vote.

Councillor Toni Carter

October 20, 2022 by · Leave a Comment 

Councillor Toni Carter, who was elected to represent Hawkwell West Ward for Rochford District Residents, has informed me this evening (17 October 2022) that, with immediate effect, she will now be representing The Conservative Party.

Because there is no resignation of the seat there will be no By Election so you cannot vote on the change although there will be an election again for this seat in May 2023 at The Local Elections.


October 20, 2022 by · Leave a Comment 

As a Member of AUDIT COMMITTEE I was so concerned that I have successfully added the need for a formal internal audit to be undertaken.

EXAMPLE – IRONWELL LANE – HAWKWELL WEST TO ROCHFORD TOWN CENTRE – There was an article in the Echo in July 2022.

I was surprised to see no reference to an earlier Council Decision from December 2019 some 2.5 years earlier.

“To explore ways that Rochford District Council and Essex County Council can work together to improve the cycle ways by connecting the various parts of the cycle tracks in and around Rochford District and in particular using Ironwell Lane to create a cycle way through from Rochford town to Hawkwell to make a safe route for cyclists instead of Hall Road, linking the two new housing estates and the new industrial area at the Airport. The benefits of improving cycling routes will include safer journeys, avoiding busy roads; reducing carbon emissions by not driving; fitness benefits, including health improvements; a reduction in use of the NHS by engaging in an active lifestyle while enjoying the outdoor environment and improving well-being. In addition, utilising Ironwell Lane will also bring this ancient highway up to a suitable standard to encourage leisure use.”

I asked the CEO why no action had apparently been taken. No explanation was made.

On a wider note I wondered who at The Council takes responsibility and accountability for seeing that ALL Decisions which are passed are enacted and Members updated.

There is a LIST. But has action been taken on them? We do not know as there have been no updates.

I found yet another which has not been enacted and as budget is now available that has been chased up. But will anything be done?