civic suite

A Lengthy Interview

There’s a lengthy interview on the Rochford Life website with John and Christine Mason…. well worth a read.

It gives a flavour of how the various opposition groups in the council chamber , which all concentrate on the local area rather than national politics, can work together.

The cabinet system , which is now even being criticised by Conservatives, is hopefully on the way out….



Sorry for our absence for the past few days…. we’ll be back tomorrow.


Sweyne Park Grass – UPDATED

We’ve had some complaints about the length of grass in Sweyne Park – people are aware that most of it is a wild flower meadow, but the complaints are about the length of grass:

  • in the play area – it’s making it start to look tatty
  • and the football playing area – its becoming difficult to play.
  • We’ve asked the council when the next cut is due, and will update readers when we get an answer.

    UPDATED MONDAY 23RD : we had an email from Rochford District Council at 6:47 this morning : “at present there is a back log of grass cutting that is being addressed through securing additional resource, with a view to being back on track by the end of week”

    Daffodils on the verge by Ferndale Road and Hullbridge Road

    Thank You

    Thank you to everyone who’s given us a smile or words of support during this campaign.

    Such as the gentleman who was pulling out of his driveway, but saw one of us coming, reversed his car , parked it, and got out to shake hands, saying that he voted for another party nationally but liked what we were saying locally and would vote for us this time.

    Such as the lady who had already cast her vote for all the Lib Dem candidates in her area and agreed to help deliver leaflets for us in the future.

    Such as the new resident in Rayleigh who said she was voting for us – after previously living in a Conservative area she was glad to be somewhere where her vote could make a difference.

    And our thoughts go out to the residents we’ve talked to , young and old, who are having especially difficult times at the moment for personal reasons.


    Out And About Today

    Chris, Ron and Chris out on the “Devonshire Estate” today. We had a very good afternoon.


    “Irresponsible dog owners could soon be fined”

    From the District Council website:

    Irresponsible dog owners could soon be fined for letting their pooches foul in public.

    Each year, thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money is spent on cleaning up after irresponsible dog owners.

    Whereas the majority of dog owners care about our environment and clean up after their pets , there is a small minority who do not. So this is a warning to this small minority of irresponsible dog owners, enough is enough.

    Rochford District Council staff who are already out and about in the community in their daily roles are undertaking the Community Safety Accreditation Scheme (CSAS). The CSAS grants accredited people certain enforcement powers, including issuing fixed penalty notices for dog fouling. The scheme commences in June.

    Cllr Jo McPherson, Portfolio Holder Environment, said: “This scheme is not aimed at the majority of dog owners who are responsible and clean up after their pets, but those who have no regard for the environment or their community. Picking up after your dog is such a simple thing to do. Just left, it is a blight for football players, children playing, and wheelchair users, to name just a few. The message is clear : pick it up, or expect a fine”.


    New Downhall and Rawreth Focus

    We’ve got a new Focus leaflet at the printers right now, for Downhall and Rawreth (including the expanded area after the May elections)

    We have our regular wonderful volunteers, to help deliver them, but if anyone else wants to help, especially in the Victoria Avenue / Cheapside West area,  we”d be very grateful!


    Beware Of Pretty Planning Pictures…

    Architects and developers often like to provide pretty pictures to go with their planning applications these days. But they don’t have much impact on how councillors think. And sometimes the pictures are less than convincing.

    For example, look at the attractive picture above – it’s apparently for a high-tech biomedical lab in Cambridge. It’s probably a great idea, and will hopefully lead to some important medical advances. But it seems to be in a different solar system – one with two suns! Look at the cyclist. And the the big building on the left doesn’t seem to have a shadow at all?

    Hat-tip: Decisions, Decisions, Decisions.

    ten commandments of logic

    The Ten Commandments Of Logic

    It’s been a busy weekend .. no time to write much. But we found the above graphic on Facebook – something for all politicians (and would-be politicians) to bear in mind!

    And It’s always nice to have a bit of Latin…

    sweyne park sunset small3

    Anyone Having A Go?

    From the District Council website:

    Winter in Rochford photography competition

    With the Rochford District featuring ancient woodlands, marshland, coast and estuary landscapes, Wallasea Island, Foulness, fields and wildlife residents are invited to take photos of what Winter in Rochford means to them.

    The Chairman of Rochford District Council, Heather Glynn, will judge the competition. There will be a prize and certificate for each winner from two categories. The first under 18s and the second Adult. The categories are:


    Under 18s and adult

    Landscape scene

    Under 18s and adult


    Under 18s and adult

    Please email your entry to . By entering the competition the applicant agrees to their photo being used by Rochford District Council. Please state your name, age, address, phone number and location for your photo. Good Luck! Keep an eye on Facebook for Winter in Rochford photos.

    The closing date is 29th February


    Happy New Year!!

    We would like to wish all our readers health and happiness for 2016….. and thank everyone who’s helped us in 2015.

    The next year is going to be a busy one for us, there are lots of things to do for our area. There are also elections in May. But we hope to rise to the challenge!

    Gorgeous Cat from the Rayleigh Cat Protection website.

    Do You Want A Cat in 2016?

    From the Rayleigh Cat Protection website:

    Thinking of offering a cat a new home in 2016?   If so, please come along to our next Homing Show, which has been  arranged for Sunday 10 January at Smallgains Hall, Creek Road, Canvey, SS8 8QP.   The Show will be held between 11.30am and 1pm and there’ll be lots of cats there, all in good health,  microchipped, vaccinated and, dependent on their age, neutered.  They also come covered by four weeks’ Pet Plan insurance (excess applies).

    But you don’t have to wait until the Show to offer a cat a home – we’d be delighted to hear from you today.    Please contact Yvonne on 01268 750831 for more information and to arrange the Home Visit that will be needed before the cat is homed with you.

    Even if you are not ready to take on a new cat, why not come along and see how the Homing Show works?  As well as many lovely cats and older kittens looking for homes, we’ll also have tables selling a wide range of cat and dog goods plus Cats Protection gifts and novelty cat items, unique to the Branch, and that would make ideal presents.   Please come along and support us – admission is free but donations are very welcome.