Sefton Labour – Steve Kermode to stand down in Park Ward – Labour sources

Leaks from within the Labour’s Party reveal that Cllr. Steve Kermode the Labour member for Sefton Council’s Park Ward (western Maghull & all Lydiate) is not standing again when his seat comes up for re-election in May of this year.

Steve is presently the Mayor of Sefton and was originally elected to Sefton Council in 2012.

I hope it is fair to say that Steve may not have found working within the local Labour Group a bed of roses. That could be because he is foremost a chap who seems to put the people who elected him first and within the Labour loyalty to the Party is always the first consideration.

Word also from within Labour is that Lydiate Parish Councillor Andy Wilson is taking Steve’s place and so it was no surprise when a letter from him, seemingly launching his campaign to win Park Ward, popped through my door a couple of days ago.

I think Park Ward will miss Steve Kermode whom I was able to work with during my last years as a Sefton Councillor. I wish him well.

New Mayor of Sefton – Cllr. Steve Kermode

www.southportvisiter.co.uk/news/southport-west-lancs/new-mayor-sefton-cllr-stephen-9303565

The Southport Vister newspaper has the story – see link above.

ABR_VIS_210515NEWMAYOR-01

Labour Councillor Steve Kermode is the new Mayor of Sefton and I wish him well. I have known Steve for 3 or 4 years now and he comes over as a decent and genuinely community minded chap. I would add that he also seems to break the mould of many in the Labour party who are wedded to tribal politics. Steve rises above such negative politics and I hope that he and his wife Gwen have a good year as ambassadors for the Borough of Sefton.

Maghull – Promoting Frank Hornby, the Town’s most famous resident

A meeting took place at Maghull Station recently where representatives of Merseytravel, The Frank Hornby Trust and Maghull Station Volunteers came together to discuss a display/story board for the station all about Hornby, his products and his association with Maghull.

I took took a couple photos of the participants:-

rsz_img_3504

From right to left are Les French – Chairman of the Frank Hornby Trust, Mark Cleave of Merseytravel, Ena Winchester of Maghull Station Volunteers. Just out of shot Alan Pritchard of the Station Volunteers. We were joined later by Cllr. Steve Kermode.

rsz_img_3506

This shot has Alan on the right.

It looks like the project has the green light and we are now working up a design.

Sefton Central Area Committee – It’s still a poor excuse for localism.

A 3-monthly Sefton Central Area Committee came around again last Thursday. This time the mini-conference (for that is what it is) was held in Maghull Town Hall yet all of the items of substance for residents were with regard to Formby and Crosby!

I was only able to stay for half the meeting as I needed to go to see an elderly chap whom I help to look after. I have the feeling that I was the lucky one though as others sat through more than I.

Participants in last Thursday's Sefton Central Area Committee

Participants in last Thursday’s Sefton Central Area Committee

So what did I see and hear?

I raised a correction with regard to the minutes of the previous meeting as ‘Maghull’ had been quoted instead of ‘Lydiate’ when identifying a location in them. Some Labour members at the meeting seemed to find this correction amusing – I know not why.

Parish Councillor David Warren of Hightown complained it took a 6 month wait to get a reply from Sefton Council over a matter he had raised!

I raised a question during the Police Report about a recent raid on a property in Church Lane Lydiate.

Bellway Homes took some stick over their activities in Formby. Complaints about the behaviour of their workforce were made by residents and Independent Cllr. Maria Bennett.

Cllr. Steve Kermode and I also raised continuing concerns about motorbikes on the Cheshire Line Path and the tow path of the Leeds Liverpool Canal with the Neighbourhood Police. We both know that the Police have a tough job to catch the nutters who make the canal tow path and Cheshire Lines path so dangerous with their motorbikes and appreciated the response of Inspector Phil Hatton. Steve and I may be in very different political parties but we often seem to on the same hymn sheet about local matters.

Aintree Village Parish Councillor Peter Gill reported on the voluntary library that is now operating out of Aintree Youth and Community Centre following Labour’s disgraceful closure of Aintree Library and their utter refusal to allow volunteers to take that building over. So despite the Sefton Council the community in Aintree and Melling have set up their own voluntary library that Sefton can’t close or disapprove of. But did I notice Labour councillors approving of the new voluntary library even though their Party stopped one from from being formed, I think I did!

Another item on the agenda was the new Parish Charter which allegedly forms the basis of an agreement between Sefton Council and the 10 Parish Councils in the Borough about how they will interact with each other. Good luck with that then is the best I can say as the previous publication of this Charter, which I had a hand in writing, was unceremoniously (and rightly) ripped up in front of Sefton’s Labour-run Cabinet not so long ago following them treating Aintree Village Parish Council like something you may find on the sole of a shoe! Labour don’t do partnerships with any organisation that does not carry a Labour Party membership card in my experience and their removal of grants to some of Sefton’s Parish Councils now means that the residents of those Parishes are paying for some local services twice.

But to return to the meeting where Formby residents had been forced to travel Maghull to raise their very local concerns……if that’s localism then I am a Dutchman as the saying goes.

Maghull – Beechcroft Retirement flats

I was recently invited to attend a coffee morning of residents who own flats in this development in Maghull Town Centre together with Labour Councillor Steve Kermode.

The residents had a number of issues they wanted Steve and I to address not least the state of the road surface outside of their homes i.e. Stafford Moreton Way.

Here is a photo I took whilst reviewing this matter with Steve and the House Manager of Beechcroft.

rsz_stafford_moreton_way_3

The road surface is very uneven and this leads to the ponding of water which at this time of year can lead to small dangerous skating rinks being created. Not good especially for the elderly.

There is clearly a problem here with the road surface and highway drainage. The pavement is also badly damaged and we were told that this has been caused by Morrisons delivery wagons needing to mount the kerb to pass other vehicles. We have asked Sefton Council to investigate and say what they can do to address the resident’s concerns.

Steve and I had a great time with the residents being served copious cups of tea and being treated to cakes! What a lovely group of people for us both to represent.