War Memorials – Well I did lay down a challenge………

Having said that my last posting on the First World Ward War had been done unless someone gave me another photo………… Well I have that photo, taken in the last few days by Jen Robertson, and it is a great one too:-

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In the famous bombed out church at the top of Liverpool’s Bold Street – St Lukes, which I have posted about previously, this new memorial was temporarily placed. It celebrates that time on Christmas Day when opposing armies played football together in no mans land. A truly fitting end to my postings about World War One in the centenary year of the start of the Great War.

The photo is amongst those on my Flickr site at:-
www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

Maghull Green Belt – More pressure being heaped on Labour councillors

Below is the text of an e-mail sent to Labour members of Sefton Council by a clearly well informed Maghull resident following the Overview & Scrutiny meeting on Sefton’s draft Local Plan which I commented on recently on this blog site:-

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I attended last nights meeting, a debut for me, and was surprised by the orderly nature of the evening, considering the content. Whilst it is fair to say that Labour councillors are not on my Christmas present shopping list, (though Bill Esterson may get a surprise under his tree after his recent outburst) I must congratulate you on managing to get the planners,”on the ropes” a few times, particularly regarding roads and schools on the School Lane site, MN 338andMN246,( I assume M.N. stands for Maghull Newtown).

To admit that the cornerstone of the whole plan, 1400 houses etc. was still awaiting a traffic assessment and no “tipping point” would matter in terms of traffic volume, was quite frankly mind blowing. Should this not have been done BEFORE the site was put in the plan?

Lib Dem MP Simon Hughes surveys the present high grade agricultural land/Green Belt to the east of Maghull where a massive urban extension is being proposed by Labour-run Sefton Council

Simon Hughes MP and local Lib Dem Green Belt campaigners survey the present high grade agricultural land/Green Belt to the east of Maghull where a massive urban extension (‘Newtown’) is being proposed by Labour-run Sefton Council

Then in answer to your question about a catholic primary school, something they [Sefton Planning Dept.] had obviously not considered, to suggest they could go to St Georges would create even more traffic, have you ever seen the school run there.

This only confirmed my suspicions that someone from planning looked at a map, saw a big field and said, we’ll build here .

A quick point on figures discussed. The O.N.S [Office of National Statistics] project a population increase of 5,000 in the 16 years to 2031 and 6,000 in the 22 years to 2037.

The plan wants to build an average of 615 homes per year. Assuming a 2.2 [person] occupancy rate it means each year 1353 (615 X2.2) of the new population are housed, therefore it will take just over 3.5 years to house the 5,000 people in the 15 year plan period and just under 4.5 years to house the 6,000 in the 22 year period (5,000 divided by 1353 and 6,000 divided by 1353).

This means during the plan time 11.5 years worth of houses out of 15 years, 7072 houses to be exact, are not for the population increase as predicted but just to cover things like backlog, second homes, (come to sunny Maghull for your hols) etc. You must admit it is daft.

So come and join the Esterson camp you know it makes sense.

Your comments would be appreciated.

*****

There can be little doubt that environmental campaigners around Sefton are putting together a strong case to challenge Labour-led Sefton Council’s draft Local Plan and that their campaigning is gathering pace and supporters. If only Maghull Town Council (also Labour run) had found the courage to fight the Planners proposals for the huge urban extension, or ‘Newtown‘ as referred to above, rather than allowing it all to wash over them. In the last round of what was then called the Unitary Development Plan in 1998 the Town Council (then Lib Dem-run) stood up and took on all comers to defend Maghull’s Green Belt and it won the day. If you don’t fight you can’t win and this time Maghull TC (now Labour-run) did not fight!

Maghull Wind Orchestra Fundraise for Woodlands Hospice

Maghull Wind Orchestra put on a concert at Maghull Town Hall on 28th October to help the Mayor of Maghull raise money for her charity Woodlands Hospice.

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The concert was Halloween themed and many of those in this large and excellent orchestra dressed up for the occasion.

These photos are not particularly good as the light levels were very low but have a look at Phil their conductor dressed as a pumpkin! Cllr. Jen Robertson can also been seen with her cat ears amongst witches and a skeleton.

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Guest Posting – Jen Robertson loves this – John Lydon interview

Nothing like watching an ageing punk make more sense than most people who try to talk about politics. Also nice to see someone being interviewed by someone who doesn’t constantly try to talk over them.

www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/video/2014/oct/15/john-lydon-russell-brand-revolution-video

“Without education you’re going to be the stupid of the future. You’re not voting, you’re not contributing, you’re not even like non-contributing, you’re just demanding that you be ignored and that’s not very smart at all.”

Love it!

Gender issues in Bootle and beyond – A guest posting from Jen Robertson

Recently Iain Brodie Brown commented on his Birkdale FOCUS (see link below) web site

birkdalefocus.blogspot.co.uk/2014/09/why-have-bootle-labour-got-such-big.html

about the astonishing lack of women being MP or Mayor of Bootle. Jen Robertson a young councillor in Maghull has her say about this:-

I share Iain’s outrage but not necessarily his solution. I don’t want to live in a world where the only way a woman can win is if men step aside. Seems more to me like what’s needed is a new outlook within politics and within society.

I can’t help but notice the one woman that has been Mayor of Bootle is referenced in the list as ‘Mrs’, none of the men were referred to as ‘Mr’, somehow they appear either to have deemed her gender or marital status to be relevant. I think it’s important however to take a step back and realise women are hardly the only discriminated against group. How many of those Mayors were non-Caucasian, or disabled, or gay or transgender? I could go on, but it would be a long list. The problem likely isn’t as simple as them all being men, it’s that they’re all probably the same kind of man. Perhaps, aside from the issues of gender, they were a more diverse group than I have realised but it seems sadly unlikely.

Education I really think is the only way to change any of this and it’s so much harder once people grow up. Our schools need to prioritise teaching the ideals of equality and diversity, and their importance in any society, in a positive and proactive way.

There is no point criticising the past for not conforming to modern standards, it is as they say ‘a foreign country, they do things differently there’, but when we can’t conform to our own standards then we become so much worse than the merely ignorant that have gone before us. Politics on every level needs a more diverse involvement, and, when it gets it, it will benefit politics just as much as it will society.