Maghull – Less than 5 days to respond to Neighbourhood Plan consultation!

I’m no fan of Neighbourhood Plans as I think they are far too limited in what than can achieve for a community. However, Maghull Town Council is one amongst a number of local parish councils that is presently trying to pull one together.

But today a Maghull resident (folks still think I represent Maghull on the Council – I have not since May 2015 but had done for 30 years prior to that) got in touch with me to ask my opinion on what had just been posted through their door today the 2nd October. This is what they said:-

‘Got a MTC [Maghull Town Council] flyer today consulting on their Neighborhood Plan. It tells people to go to the Town Hall and pick up a copy of it. Wait for this, all remarks have to be back by Friday 6th October. 4 days time! I haven’t even got the document, then it would have to be read before an opinion could be formed. Is this a joke or what. A real, proper consultation?’

I suppose my first thought was surely the date printed on the flyer for responses has to be wrong but then I also thought well just how many residents are really going to traipse down to Maghull Town Hall anyway to pick up a copy of what will in all likelihood be a very dry document – hardly good bedtime reading.

The danger with a situation like this, which Maghull Town Council has placed itself in, is that it can give consultation a bad name if it is in such a tight timescale and by its nature is pretty much inaccessible to residents who probably don’t know what a Neighbourhood plan really is anyway.

Further words fail me, they really do…..

New Maghull North Station due to open May 2018

Site for the new Maghull North Railway Station. Photo taken looking north from School Lane road bridge. The former Moss Side Hospital site is to the right and Mersey Avenue to the left.

I have been chasing up the latest position with regard to the Maghull’s 2nd railway station and with the help of Merseytravel Committee member John Dodd. I can supply the following information which has been provided to John by Merseytravel.

*****

The contractor for the Maghull North station began the mobilisation stage for the station works on Monday 4 September.

Work has also begun on the de-vegetation of the railway cutting within the existing Network Rail trackside boundary. An ecologist is on site in case there are any particular issues that are found as the staff work their way in to the undergrowth.

Merseytravel will be meeting with Network Rail on Friday [8th September] and will discuss further details of the early stages of the construction works.

Opening of the railway station is still planned for May 2018 when the new summer timetable starts. At this stage it is not intended to rework the Maghull Circulars [buses], some of which provide a service from the existing station and pass the site of the new station.

However there will be further bus service reviews in time to come and the services will be looked at with knowledge of the new station, the Persimmon Homes development currently underway (Poppy Fields) and any proposals for development on the lands east of Maghull.

With thanks to Cllr. John Dodd for the lead to this posting

This photo shows the view from the Park Lane overbridge looking south towards the School Lane overbridge from where the previous photo was taken. The new station will be close to the School Lane bridge.

Maghull – Millbank Lane is unadopted says Sefton Council

I cycle around the Sefton East Parishes (Maghull, Lydiate, Aintree, Melling and Sefton & Lunt Villages) part of the Borough quite a lot and the other day I was stopped by a chap on Park Lane who said ‘hey you are a local councillor aren’t you? – can you get the pot holes in Millbank Lane filled in please?’.

Oddly I had just been down there on my bike and had noticed some large pot-holes myself so I was only too happy to get in touch with Sefton Highways to ask them to oblige.

Millbank Lane, I should add runs from the junction with Kenyons Ln, Park Ln and Dodds Ln through to Maghull’s boundary with West Lancs and Aughton Civil Parish. The final 50 yards of it (in Aughton) is a footpath, only the part in Maghull is tarmaced and it serves a part of the Maghull community known by some as The Small Holdings.

Sadly the response from Sefton was that the lane is not one that has been adopted by the Council so it is not their responsibility to repair the pot-holes. I had wondered if that would be the answer because although unadopted roads usually have a sign saying ‘Unadopted’ at their beginning (and Millbank Lane for some reason does not) I had a funny feeling that it may indeed be unadopted.

From the gate and stile to Butchers Lane (behind the camera) in Aughton is only a footpath.

But clearly over the years the lane has been patch repaired on numerous occasions as you can clearly see. So the question now is who does hold the repair and maintenance responsibilities for Millbank Lane. Any answers on a postcard (or by e-mail) to me would be appreciated.

Which brings me to a memory of my first political campaign as a candidate and when when I first won a seat on Maghull Town Council in September 1985 for the SDP/Liberal Alliance.

My agent for that election was none other than Bruce Hubbard and he sent me canvassing up Millbank Lane to the Small Holdings community. So door-knocking I went to be met at one house by a chap asking me about ‘pig subsidies’. Suffice to say that I was floored by that question and Bruce has been using my bewildered response in his after dinner speeches ever since. No wonder I had to leave Maghull in 2011 to move to Lydiate! I would add that I no longer represent Maghull as a councillor – I’m a Lydiate councillor these days.

Maghull – Frank Hormby Trust Update

I have not blogged about the Trust for a while now but it recently purchased an original postcard as depicted below:-

Whilst the used postcard is not in the best of condition it is a very significant shot of the part of Station Road in Maghull (in the 1920’s?) where Frank Hornby first lived (at The Hollies) and where English Heritage installed their Blue Plaque on 6th July 2000. The plaque had been requested by Maghull Town Council to celebrate the town’s most famous resident and it sparked a local historical plaque scheme promoted by the Town Council.

Hornby’s house, where he lived for 10 years, is the one with the bay window furthest away from you when viewing the postcard. The scene is looking down Station Road with the Great Mogul Pub and Maghull Railway Station being behind the photographer.

When he left the Hollies Hornby moved just a few yards down Station Road to Quarry Brook which is now a part of Maricourt High School.

Click on the postcard to enlarge it.

The Trust has a Facebook page at:-

www.facebook.com/hornbytrust/

It also has a significant display of Frank Hornby related memorabilia and products from his Liverpool Binns Road factory in Meadows Leisure Centre on KGV Park in Maghull. They are in the Frank Hornby Room which is immediately on your left as you enter the main doors of the Leisure Centre. The room is well used for various health, fitness and community activities so its best to check with the Leisure Centre before you set out to look at the display to see when it is free.

This shot was taken whilst cleaning of the display cases was taking place in 2016.

Maghull RBS – Here to help 2 days per week

The demise of our traditional high street bank branches is writ large in this notice recently placed outside Maghull’s RBS in Liverpool Road North.

Following the loss of Barclays, HSBC and Nat West from the Town how long will the RBS survive now its down to opening just 2 days per week?

Maghull – Weeds festooned around new Home Bargains Site

So we know that Home Bargains is going to occupy the new store on the old Maghull Library/former Stafford Moreton Youth Centre site but have you seen the weeds that are growing in the ‘landscaped’ parts of the site!

Click on the photo to enlarge it

Who is the land owner I wonder and when will their grounds maintenance regime kick in?

As a Maghull in Bloom volunteer my view is that we need the owner to step up and make the landscaped parts of the site a credit to Maghull and the sooner the better please.