The Planning Committee met last week to decide whether or not to give permission for the conversion of the upper floors of Blockbuster Video Hire in Wallasey Village into four flats. In spite of letters of objections from residents living in Beechwood Avenue, a petition, my objections and a site visit, the committee ignored our concerns and voted for APPROVAL. The planning permission is in place for three years and work must be completed within this timeframe.
They ignored our concerns regarding parking which is at a premium in Wallasey Village – with residents living nearby already struggling to compete for parking spaces with shoppers and staff/parents from St Mary’s College. They also ignored Policy (SPD 2) which requires a maximum of one parking space per flat explaining that a couple more spaces wouldn’t make much difference.
Their decision is final and there is no right of appeal.
If you have never switched your energy supplier, or haven’t switched in the last 12 months, you could benefit from ‘Collective Switching’, which on average could save you around £212 per year.
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When the new roundabout at Harrison Drive/Bayswater Road was first built I drove from the prom to Harrison Drive to take a look. I must confess that I nearly hit the bit of pavement which juts out to make room for a cycle path. With so many visitors coming to New Brighton, I thought I wouldn’t be the first or the last driver to swerve to miss it.
So I contacted the council. Their answer was to place a cone there while they thought about it, but considering the cost of the roundabout was over £150,000 and a specialist firm was employed, and responsible for, the design, I wasn’t impressed.
Since then I’ve had complaints from local residents who have observed a number of cars mounting the pavement. The cone is still there, looking a little battered, so I’ve contacted the council and asked them to stop thinking about it and take some action (if this Labour-led administration decide to switch the street lights off again this winter it would become an accident hotspot).
I’m pleased to say that three marker posts (Town Hall speak for ‘bollard’) will be installed next to the cycle path to make it more visible – with work starting in the next few weeks. They’re also considering further modifications or additional hatched carriageway markings (I’ve told them, not red, which wears very quickly and looks tatty) to make it more safe.
If you are a voluntary or community organisation working anywhere in Wirral, you may be able to apply for a ‘Your Wirral’ grant of up to £2,500. It’s a joint initiative between Magenta Living and the Council with £50,000 committed to Wallasey – so apply now!
Apply for a ‘Your Wirral’ grant here.
Find out more about ‘Your Wirral’
When the Council published their Programme of Works for Wirral’s highways (2014-2015) there was only one road in Wallasey on the list as being in need of a ‘surface dressing’ (that’s Town Hall speak for resurfaced), so armed with a list of roads that I knew needed attention in Wallasey, I had a rather robust conversation with the highways department however, I was told other areas are in more need (Birkenhead?).
Finally, last week, Belvidere Road (our one and only road) received its surface dressing. Never before have I received so many complaints from residents about the low standard of workmanship, and by mid-week there were already patches in the road where potholes were beginning to develop with loose stones still covering the pavements.
I contacted the Council and requested that highway officers came out to inspect the road themselves. It’s the Council’s responsibility to ‘pre patch’ a road before the contractors come along, and in this case even the highways officers admitted that the work wasn’t good and that the pre work (pre patching) was not carried out to a high level and that work was ‘thin’ in parts – in other words, a bad job.
As a result they will be back to ‘duro’ patch those areas which are not acceptable in the next few weeks and this time next year the road will be resurfaced again to give a uniform effect.
It would have been beneficial for the Council to carry out the work to a high standard in the first place, but when they return next year, if it’s not up to standard I will make sure they come back until it is!
NB I was told that this type of ‘surface finish’ is used in many parts of the country as it seals the road surface against ingress of water and impedes (to a large extent) the deterioration of the road surface and underlying road pavement structure, giving a much longer life span to the road – but clearly not in this case where it barely lasted a week!!
Local hairdressers, Artistica (based in Seaview Road) decided to give something back to the community today. They got in touch with AgeUK and organised an event. In true community spirit they opened their doors for all those who cant, or don’t usually get out, for whatever reason. Eighteen ladies and one gentleman were treated to lunch, a flower presentation and a free hair wash or manicure – at no cost. The offer was also open to carers, most of whom look after those with dementia.
It was wonderful to see so many delighted to get out, have a natter and leave looking more glamorous! That was the only criteria Artistica wanted – to put a smile on their faces, which they certainly achieved. Everyone went home with a ‘goody’ bag and for those lucky few a flower arrangement.
Congratulations to Stella, Lindsey, Mandy, Tanya and Jill from Artistica – for giving up their time and making so many people happy!
Leah Fraser with Dot and Lynn Hamilton from AgeUK
Cllrs Leah Fraser and Paul Hayes after a trip on the replica Viking longship, Draken Harald Harfagre
The largest ever replica Viking longship, Draken Harald Harfagre, has been docked at the West Float in Wallasey for the last two weeks. It’s the first voyage the longship has made from her home in Norway, and yesterday I was delighted to be invited to meet the Captain Bjorn Ahlander and his crew at the Liverpool Victoria Rowing Club. It was good that the rain stopped and the sun came out as we watched the longship approach and dock next to the club, after a few speeches we were invited to jump aboard and sail (I say ‘sail’ more like sitting down and enjoying the view!). I know many of the members of the rowing club have been heavily involved in bringing the Draken Harald Harfagre to Wirral so many congratulations to everyone for all their hard work and I hope they enjoyed their ‘scouse’ evening last night! Good luck and a safe passage on your voyage back to Norway.
Largest ever replica Viking longship, Draken Harald Harfagre