Lincs County Council election campaign – better late than never?

About me

I came to Spalding in February 1996, with my wife Linda and my son Daniel, having completed a tour of duty with the Royal Air Force in Cyprus.  I retired from the RAF in Sep 2005 after 38 years service.  I became a district councillor on South Holland DC in May 1999 and currently hold a cabinet position with responsibility for Waste, Recycling, Green Spaces and Carbon Management. I am also the chairman of the Planning Committee.

First and foremost, I believe that the role of a councillor is to represent the views and interests of all taxpayers, not just those who voted for him or her, or who happen to share the same interests.  A councillor should always be prepared to stand up for what is right and for the fair and equal treatment for all citizens.

During my time as a district councillor, I have come to realise that being at the southern end of Lincolnshire means that we in South Holland have to work that much harder to make our voices heard in Lincoln. I would now like the opportunity to make sure that Spalding South is always one of the voices being heard at our county council.

One of the most important jobs for any elected member is to act as the local face of the council and to work to ensure that people get the best possible service from their district or county council.  As a district councillor, I believe that I have a proven track record of achievement on behalf of those who live in my ward, the people of Spalding and for South Holland.  I am now asking for your support to help me continue this work as a member of Lincolnshire County Council.

As your county councillor, I promise to work hard and to use my experience as district councillor and my deep commitment to South Holland, to promote our district as whole.  I will work hard to ensure that the views of the people of the Spalding South division are fully represented and always properly considered by the county council.

My priorities include:

  • Seeking to reduce traffic congestion and improve the traffic flows in and around Spalding.
  • Finding a way to increase the number of areas currently served by the InTo Town bus service.
  • Encouraging the county council to look at the introduction of a 20mph speed limit in all residential areas.
  • Ensuring that the county council continues to work towards achieving a relief road to the north west of Spalding.
  • Ensuring the residents of Spalding South are fully represented at the county council at every opportunity
  • I will do my utmost to press the county council to find a permanent and effective solution to the traffic congestion in Spalding town centre
  • Continuing to put pressure on Anglian Water to address the stench from West Marsh Road Sewage Works

A few achievements

Pedestrian safety mirror Park Rd Spalding

Mirror installed with funding from Spalding Town Forum at junction of Park Rd and Pinchbeck Rd

Shelter crop

Part funded from ward budget, youth shelter on open space

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Got the graffiti removed, litter cleared from underneath and the light that had not worked for 18 months, repaired and moved to a new location for better future access

Area of the river bank that was overgrown and blocking views as well as preventing pedestrians seeing traffic clearly. Despite initial outcry from the public, I had it all removed and grassed. Vast majority of the feedback received since is very positive.

Organised installation of decorative stone blocks to discourage drivers mounting grassed verge and ruining this lovely part of the river side.

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Time for CPE to broaden its horizons?

untitled-1Now that the county council has taken over the regulation of on street parking, law and order has been restored to our town centre, with shoppers and visitors finding it easier to stop to make a quick visit to a local shop or office.

The Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE) officers now know where the hot spots are and are able to target these to great effect. One might even suggest that few of these offences take place before 8.45, or between 2.30 and 3 pm on any given day. Given their effectiveness at restoring order to the ‘wild west’ that was Spalding town centre, I wonder if the powers that be would consider widening the remit of CPE in order to restore some order to the streets around our schools?

Typical school safety zone

Typical school safety zone

As any highway’s officer or traffic cop will tell you, Spalding isn’t unique when it comes to stories of bad behaviour by car driving parents on streets around our local schools. Until now, the police have been the only ones with the powers to deal with these miscreants. Given the lack of police resources, the likelihood of a cry of, ‘you’re nicked!’, being heard outside of any school gate, is virtually nil. However, with the advent of CPE, we now have the potential to address this problem, thereby reducing the misery suffered by residents living in the streets surrounding our schools.

yellow-zig-zag-lines Most of our schools now have yellow zigzag lines on the road outside their front entrance. Whilst this seems to do the job of keeping these areas clear at the required times, it also has the knock on effect of pushing bad parking behaviour into surrounding streets.

images 4I’m not suggesting that we should now be scarring every side street, around every school, with double yellow lines – as well as being an eyesore, that would make life even more difficult for residents. However, I do believe that it should be possible to make effective use of CPE to enforce some of the existing rules on the parking of vehicles on the public highway. Parking across a driveway where there’s a dropped kerb is an offence, as is parking with 10mts of a junction in most instances.

Once a few tickets have been issued outside of a number of schools and over a period of time, word will soon get around that the parking enforcers have widened their horizons and that it’s time for car driving parents to start behaving themselves.

20 mph speed limit needed on our residential streets

Living Streets is a national charity that campaigns to make our streets and roads safer places for us all to use. Their strap line is, ‘putting people first’ and they have just launched a national campaign to encourage more councils to introduce a 20 mph limit in residential areas.

This is something I have been trying to get the county council to consider for sometime now and the more public support there is, the more likely it is LCC will give it some serious thought. If you would like to make the streets safer for our children, please go to the Living Streets website and take part in their ‘Show You Love 20mph’ campaign.

There would also be a further benefit to making the 20mph speed limit legally enforceable in Lincolnshire. Many of our schools have what is currently only an advisory 20mph speed limit on the street outside of them. This advisory status means that even when a driver is spotted exceeding it, the most they will currently get from the police is a ticking off and advice on being a more responsible and considerate driver.