Thursday, January 15, 2009
Government announcement good news for Derrington, Seighford, Hyde Lea, and Burton Manor
As I suggested last year a more workable, and in my opinion, more acceptable plan would be to use the hard shoulder at times of heavy congestion as an extra lane – a technique already successfully used on the M42 to the south of Birmingham. And today this is just what Geoff Hoon – the Secretary of State for transport announced.
However the M6 battle is not yet won, as I still feel much more could be done to reduce the noise and environmental pollution from the existing road. Sound barriers are desperately needed to protect Derrington and Seighford, while improvements to the existing sound prevention measures must be carried out to ensure better protection for Hyde Lea and Burton Manor.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
How long does Christmas last in the wonderful world of Tory Town?
Well if it’s left to the Tory run Borough Council it appears it can drag on into the middle of January. You only have to walk through the Market Square or down the main street to see what I mean – the town Christmas tree, the nativity crib, and most of the overhead Christmas lights are still up!
I’m not sure if this is yet another sign the Conservatives have run out of money and can’t afford to take the decorations down yet, or whether it is another plan to save money and they intend to leave them up until next year! Then again it could be just a marketing ploy to get more people to visit the town, as Stafford will be the only place in the UK to have an Easter tree and Easter lights!
Appalling treatment for Blue Badge visitor
A couple of days before Christmas I got a telephone call from a local lady who was extremely worried she had got a parking ticket while shopping in Sainsbury’s. It appeared she had placed her blue parking badge in the widow so the details could not be seen. She had struggled across the car-park and found the warden to show him the pass was valid. However he told her that because he had already issued the ticket the computerised system would not let him take revoke it and she would have to appeal.
I took the case up on her behalf and after two e-mails and a letter, in which I had to send copies of both sides of her parking badge, the parking fine was scrapped.
I certainly learned three very important lessons from this incident. Firstly the Council’s system of issuing parking tickets is so inflexible that even putting a disabled parking badge upside down would generate a fine. Secondly the Council seem determined to make visitors to the town feel unwelcome, and thirdly the Council’s car-parking fines collection service is run from Stoke-on-Trent and that all communication must be by e-mail or letter. No wonder the Conservatives are worried that the income from car-parks is well below the expected level if this is how motorists are treated! But in the other hand, making it difficult to appeal against a parking ticket might just be a ploy to ensure that they do not loose any more money than they have too!
Monday, January 5, 2009
Failing cats-eyes - something must be done!
I've already raised the issue with the County Council and have asked them to take immediate action to replace the faulty reflectors, but I’m not holding my breath. My real worry is that unless they do take action now a really nasty accident could occur especially as the weather-forecasters are predicting a really bad winter!
Saturday, January 3, 2009
Another wonderful display of Christmas lights
Firstly it will be interesting to know just how much was raised for charity by the houses who always organise collections, and whether the pervious years totals will be exceeded even given the current poor economic climate?
Secondly why were there no lights outside the shops? I’m not blaming the tenants as I believe in previous years these lights were put-up by the owners of the building. But I do hope by next year someone has made arrangements so there is not such a black hole in the centre of the wonderful village display!
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