A tribute to ‘Pat from Lydiate’

For the last 5 years, one of my Borough councillors for Park Ward of Sefton Council has been Independent Pat O’Hanlon. She effectively took up as a Borough councillor as I bowed out of being one in 2016.

I got to know Pat as she was one of quite a few environmental campaigners who came together from across the political spectrum to oppose high-grade agricultural land being taken out of the Green Belt in Sefton Borough for development via the Sefton Local Plan; a fight I had long been involved with myself as regular readers of this blog site will be aware. Pat came from a Labour/socialist background but had left the Labour Party due to its stance on this hugely controversial issue. Indeed, she didn’t just leave Labour she stood against them and took a Sefton Council seat off them in Park Ward.

I liked working with Pat as she reminded me of another previous councillor for Park Ward – Lib Dem Robbie Fenton – who was tenacious and very determined to pursue any and every issue brought to her attention. Like Robbie, Pat did not seek the limelight as a councillor, she just got on with the job and she did it very well.

I was disappointed when it became apparent that Pat would not be contesting her Park Ward seat this May as politics needs the Pat’s and Robbie’s of this world who don’t give a damn who they take on.

Before Pat was elected she gained the nickname ‘Pat from Lydiate’ as a consequence, I think, of an interview on Radio Merseyside. She was also a very significant campaigner against asbestos pollution and I think it fair to say she gave both Sefton Council and the Health and Safety Executive a real run for their money over it.

Well done Pat, I’d be surprised if anyone who’d approached you during your term of office as a borough councillor had anything but good things to say about you. You more than did your bit for Lydiate, Maghull and the local environment; enjoy your retirement.

Lydiate – Asbestos row – former Daverick Motors site

Asbestos is always a serious matter and it was one that I ensured was aired in public at Sefton’s Planning Committee meeting last week.

Local residents raised the matter with me so I ensured they had the opportunity to voice their concerns in front of an open meeting.

The site is in my ward (Park Ward) and of course I also want to know if asbestos found on the site was been removed in line with the strict conditions laid down by the Health and Safety Executive and other bodies/regulations. New houses are presently being built on the site I would add.

My understanding is that any asbestos would have been associated with the former industrial buildings on the site that were demolished before the house building commenced.

Residents, led by Pat and Mike O’Hanlon, have documents that refer to there being asbestos on the site and Pat read from them to members of Sefton’s Planning Committee.

The issue is now going before Sefton’s Chief Executive as residents have been unhappy with the responses they have received from the Council so far.

Clear answers are required. We await the Chief Executive’s views, whom I have contacted on behalf of the residents.

STOP PRESS – I have had a response from the Council just as I was publishing this posting. They say that their initial investigation indicates that all was dealt with properly but as said above we now await the Chief Executive’s view on the matter.