Westway, Maghull – Dangerous narrow pavement


Cllr. Jen Robertson spotted this recently and discussed with me what we can do to try to get it cut back.

The land from which the overgrowth emanates is called The Dell and it is owned by the NHS as it forms part of the grounds of Maghull Health Centre. Recent NHS reorganisation required a bit of detective work to be undertaken to find out whom the responsible NHS official may be who can get the work done. We hope we have found the right person and this photo has been sent to them with a request for urgent cutting back of the offending overgrowth.

Separately, Maghull in Bloom volunteers are offering their services to the NHS to help maintain this dell (as I have posted about previously) and a response is awaited.

UPDATE – Still no progress in the NHS cutting back their overgrowth so another reminder sent 1/11/13.

South Meade/Hinchley Green, Maghull – Problem UU box gets sorted at last

The latest UU green box, quite an improvement on the monster sized one they put in earlier this year

The latest UU green box, quite an improvement on the monster sized one they put in earlier this year

This was the supersized one which had to go!

This was the supersized one which had to go!

I must admit to getting a little confused over this matter – my postings of 02/02/13 & 05/03/13 give the background.

My confusion was due to a planning application that is presently going through Sefton Council’s system which I had spotted. Ah, I thought, I will need to keep an eye on this as residents were up in arms over this matter earlier in the year for the reasons I posted about on the dates above.

But it turns out all is OK because United Utilities have already backed down, taken out the offending 6ft tall box and replaced it with a much smaller one that is far more in keeping with the ‘village green’ environment and the two smaller boxes that had been there previously. I had not realised that the offending box had gone since I was last in South Meade 3 to 4 weeks ago.

All sorted now and I think all will be happy with the solution.

Lower Alt Wind Farm Project


I have commented on this matter a number of times in the past few months but this posting is to assist those looking to get involved with the campaign group HALT that is fighting against the 24 Blackpool Tower sized wind turbines that are being proposed for the piece of land in West Lancashire that splits the middle of Sefton Borough between Lydiate and Ince Blundell.

Please have a look a HALT’s web site.

Pilling Lane Steps, Lydiate – A Brief update


This is me at the steps leading up from the Leeds Liverpool Canal to Pilling Lane in Lydiate today.

Readers will know that my Lydiate Parish Council colleagues and I have been pushing for the steps to be repaired and reopened without delay but that it now looks as though the Canal & River Trust will not be undertaking the required work until January 2014 at the earliest, as the Aintree & Maghull Champion newspaper reported a very recently.

I had another look today and it seems that the Trust may have given up the unequal struggle, at least partly, to stop folk using the steps because the fencing at the bottom of the steps has now been removed leaving only the fence at the top, which I have frequently see people climb over.

The steps are very much misaligned (below where I am stood in the photo) due to what seems to be a water erosion problem below them. Clearly, investigation of the problem when the work starts may lead to it being a bigger issue than it may seem to be at present. Bearing in mind that the road here was closed for repairs a few years ago due to a similar problem I fear that things could get worse before they are resolved.

SAVE OUR GREEN BELT – Maghull Town Council – A complete lack of leadership

I was recently asked by the Labour administration whether the now 5 strong group of Lib Dem Opposition members on Maghull Town Council would like to help Labour in its proposed sample survey of the Maghull population over the draft Local Plan that Labour run Sefton Borough Council is putting forward. That draft Local Plan, which has already been endorsed for consultation by the majority Labour Group on Sefton Council, means a huge chunk of Maghull’s Green Belt is down to be concreted over.

I got to see a copy of the proposed survey and after consultation with my fellow Lib Dem members we decided not to work with Labour over this matter. But why did we make that decision? Don’t Lib Dems believe in co-operation with other political parties? Well yes we do but…………….

Our problem with Labour over the Sefton Green Belt is that whilst they have been shouting ‘save the Green Belt’ they have been voting to consult on doing just the opposite. What’s more some of the Labour members of Sefton Council also sit on Maghull Town Council; in fact 5 Labour members of Sefton Council (including 3 all-powerful Bootle Cabinet members) are members of Maghull Council.

Separately, Maghull Town Council Labour Group recently published a plan for their own proposed activities over the next year or so. Included in this plan was the proposed Green Belt survey. We Lib Dems said then that the Town Council needed to lead the community to oppose the Green Belt grab rather than launching an all too late sample consultation.

You see the real problem here is that any sample public consultation should have been undertaken in 2011 when the first round of public consultation took place over the Green Belt. All of the Parish Councils in Sefton made submissions to the Borough Council about their concerns back then but Maghull Town Council, under its Labour leadership, made no comment at all!

Two years down the track and Big Brother Labour run Sefton Council has proposed the biggest of all the Green Belt developments in the Borough should be on Maghull’s high grade agricultural land east of Poverty Lane. If Maghull TC had fought for the Green Belt back in 2011 we may not now be facing the attack on the Town’s Green belt now. If you don’t make representations when it matters you should not be surprised if failing to make representations drops you in it!

Also back in July across 3 of Maghull’s 4 electoral Town Council wards there were by-elections where Labour lost 2 of the 3 seats up for grabs and clung onto the 3rd by just 9 votes. And what were the two big issues in those by-elections? Not surprisingly they were opposition to Labour’s proposal to build on the Green Belt and to Labour’s plan to charge folks to have their green bins emptied. Two of those by-elections (the 2 Labour lost) were fought across the two Town Council wards that make up the Borough ward of Sudell. My point? Sudell ward is where all the Green Belt building is proposed to happen in Maghull!

Elections are the biggest test of opinion in a democracy as everyone on the electoral register has the chance to vote should they choose to do so. In Maghull North and East wards (the two which make up Sudell ward) Labour failed the public consultation test because they were proposing Green Belt building and charging for Green Bin collections. Don’t you think that the public consultation has been done, that it is very recent and that the result is clear; do I.

Labour’s consultation smacks of ‘we did not like the result of the last consultation (elections) so lets try again to see if we can find a way of getting a different answer’.

Please Labour, stop this carry on now and reaffirm the Town Council policy from 1998 (when it was Lib Dem run). Back then the Council led the community and fought a hard campaign to see off Sefton Borough Council who wanted to build on the Green Belt. It may be very late in the day, it may well be that saying nothing in 2011 showed an appalling lack of community leadership, but Labour can repent if they just stop running around in circles and do what the electorate said in July – fight to save the Green Belt instead of voting to build on it!!