onlineFOCUS – News and Stuff For Rochford District since 2003

 

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Thinking Neighbourly

One of our regulars contacted us today – she’d had some sad news. Someone that she knew purely online has died.

Unfortunately it is one of those very sad cases where the deceased lay undiscovered in his flat for, it’s thought, around 3 weeks. He was only discovered when another poster on the online board got really worried because he hadn’t been heard from him and rang the local Police Even his mothers nursing home hadn’t bothered alerting authorities when he hadn’t visited her even though he used to go every day without fail. Neighbours hadn’t noticed he wasn’t around, no-one.

The deceased lived in central London, maybe out here people know their neighbours a little better. So if your don’t see or hear anything from your neighbour for an unusually long time, how about checking to see that they are OK?

A Reminder To All Members Of the District Council

From Section G of our code of conduct on the Council website:

 

Don’t decide or discuss how to vote on any application at any sort of political

group meeting, or lobby any other Member to do so. Political Group Meetings should never

dictate how Members should vote on a planning issue.

Holocaust Day 2015

From the District Council website:

 

Picture - Keep the Memory Alive - Holocaust Memorial Day 2015

 

Holocaust Memorial Day 2015

 
Date: 
Tuesday, 27 January 2015 – 12:30pm

 

To commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day 2015 Rochford District Council will be holding a public service at the Memorial to Victims of Persecution Bellingham Lane, Rayleigh followed by a short film and reading in The Mill Arts and Events Centre on Tuesday, 27 January at 12:30 pm

The Chairman of the Council would like to invite you, your family and friends to attend the service

Please RSVP to Lynn Rackley, Civic Officer

Phone: 01702 318144
Email: lynn.rackley@rochford.gov.uk

Getting Our Walking Shoes Ready…

We are getting a Focus for Downhall and Rawreth Ward printed tomorrow…

Season’s Greetings

Rayleigh Mount 1c

Best wishes to all of our readers, whether they are residents, fellow councillors or dedicated council staff. We’ll be back after Christmas…

… and remember spring is coming soon….

Rayleigh Mount 2

Tonight’s Council Meeting

It was reasonably lively but without any bad temper. Here’s a few points:

Council Chairman June Lumley was admirably frugal tonight. Most Council Chairman request a buffet with wine for councillors on the night of the December meeting. June didn’t do this, but did arrange refreshments to the public who attended the Civic Carol Service on Sunday, which raised about £245 for charity.

Green Party Leader Michael Hoy made the best point of the evening. The decision to offer free parking on 3 Saturday afternoons before Christmas was taken as “an urgent item” which couldn’t be challenged. Michael asked why the decision was taken so late in the year that it had to be an urgent item. “Didn’t the Council know Christmas was coming?” The answer given was that the council didn’t know it could afford this until quite late in the year. John Mason and Chris Black followed this up later with some forensic questioning , which revealed that the council knew in June it had about £60,000 available – the cost of 3 free Saturday afternoons was about £9,000. Chris Black asked for an earlier decision next year, which might allow an extra free afternoon, either earlier in December or just after Xmas.

UKIP leader John Hayter had a go at the adoption of the “Development Management Plan”: This is basically a new version of the council’s “Bible” of planning policies. Not the zoning of land for development, but all the other policies. Things like the design of new developments, housing density, infilling of gardens, phone masts, what is allowed in the Green Belt, green tourism, playing pitches and other leisure and recreational uses…. John criticised the document because of all the new development proposed in the district, but John Mason, Chris Black, and Michael Hoy pointed out that he was criticising the wrong document for that.

The Tories best part of the night was a report showing that the council’s financial situation was improving.

Ron Oatham made it clear his opinion of central government when John Mason asked whether a certain financial amount “was being lost back to central government, or worse?” Ron immediately called out “Could anything BE worse?”

Chris Black asked how many planning enforcement cases were currently ongoing – the answer was 362, just four less than last year. He asked what could be done to reduce this figure quicker, and was told they would soon have three members of staff again, instead of the current two.

Rochford District Matters Is Coming Out This Week….

Rochford District Matters (the council newspaper) is being delivered this week.

The council’s senior communications officer would like to know of any residents who don’t receive a copy. So if you don’t receive one by the end of tomorrow (Friday 28th) , please feel free to leave a comment below, with your postcode

Thanks.

Sorting Out Sweyne Park

Ditch in Sweyne Park., after nearby residents had unlocked most of the grille

Ditch in Sweyne Park., after nearby residents had unlocked most of the grille

Credit where it’s due – Its good to see that the District Council de-silting the ditches in Sweyne Park, and carrying out other work to reduce the risk of flooding.
See more on the council website here.
 

Hopefully this will prevent incidents like the one pictured above.

Plenty more work around the district still to do though.

Sorry…

… suffered a cyberattack a couple of days ago, but we’re back now (hopefully)

Rawreth Flood Issues

 

240px-Rawreth_sign

The main theme at tonight’s Rawreth Parish Council Meeting was probably flooding.

There had been flooding in Church Road since the last meeting – Hayley the parish clerk had been out in her specially purchased parish waders to deliver sandbags . The sandbags had been provided by Rochford District Council, though it was disappointing that nobody from RDC had come to see the flooding, despite a urgent request to do so.

“Idiot” motorists who had tried to drive through the floodwater came in for some criticism , especially those who caused  additional flooding by the wake of their vehicles.

Rawreth Flood Action Group have asked if the parish council can give them a grant, and this will be discussed at the next meeting  in December.

 

 

What James Did Next

Southend Labour Councillor Julian Ware Lane writes here about former Tory Councillor James Cottis, who after losing in last May’s elections is bouncing back. He is apparently is planning to stand for election in Southend, and has an intriguing photo with Nigel Farage on his Facebook page…

Poor Air Quality In Parts Of Rayleigh Town Centre

Rayleigh  High Street From the Tower

Not good news.

Levels of  Nitrogen Dioxide are still above national agreed levels  in parts of Rayleigh Town Centre. (Nitrogen Dioxide is a pollutant that comes from, amongst other things,   vehicle exhausts. ) The District Council is now planning to set up an “Area Quality Management Area” and is consulting  the public on how big an area it should cover.

Find out more on the District Council Website here.

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Latest Comments

  • Chris Black: Toby , I’m actually fairly relaxed about the Standards Committee situation. I would expect all...
  • Toby Mountain: Touche! The Mighty Oz @ 25 – The difference being… I left the Conservatives because they stifled...
  • Jim Cripps: Oz – hopefully that will be reflected in the Ward voting when it comes… 230;..😏
  • The Mighty Oz: Toby, agree, it’s so annoying when people get elected under one banner and then change...
  • Linda Kendall: Cherry Orchard park was developed in Rochford from the Section 106 payments from the developers of the...
  • Brian Guyett: Thanks Linda, you are correct. I haven’t studied the report in detail but (unless I’ve...
  • Toby Mountain: Now that Cllr June Lumley has declared herself as a Conservative and made disparaging remarks in...
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  • A.Matthews: Chris at least they would be converted whereas we have scattered all over the district rusting hulks in...
  • Chris Black: Oz, I didn’t have strong feelings on this one. The ‘cafeR 17; would just be a converted...
  • Linda Kendall: Brian @ 18. I have just quickly scanned the document you quote and although my view is many companies...
  • Linda Kendall: Re. 17 above. What I failed to point out was that the ‘NEW̵ 7; site for the Rawreth...
  • Jim Cripps: I’ve been quietly sitting in and listening to Council debates on a regular basis for about 18...
  • The Mighty Oz: Chris, can you tell us why you voted against the cafe in Hockley Woods ?
  • A.Matthews: Ian back to he subject.The loss of more industrial units emphasises what I said in 13 above.Yes this is a...
  • Jim Cripps: Is there an election coming up then?…..
  • Jim Cripps: Core Strategy – excellent value at £2.1 million then , bloody outrageous , a Public Enquiry indeed...
  • Ian Jordan: This is about Main Road Hawkwell, not land North of London Road, I can’t see much greenfield on...
  • Brian Guyett: The latest document to be added to the Evidence Base is The Employment Land Study Report 2014...
  • The Mighty Oz: Copied from the BBC news site this morning… Some 200,000 homes will be made available to...
  • admin: Brian @ 8 – you can comment in the election period about a planning application in the same way as at...
  • bruce smart: Thanks – personally do not see Mark as a member of the public. As our MP he should probably be...
  • Brian Guyett: Delay the application until after the election? That would be a brave call. A full, detailed,...
  • Angelina: Bruce Smart, he is at the request of Hullbridge Residents Association. He met with them on the 30th...

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500 HOUSES BETWEEN LONDON ROAD AND RAWRETH LANE

There's lots of information on the District Council website about the planning application "North of London Road ". To see it , just click here.

The Core Strategy

This is the official master document for planning policy in our district! To download it, click here click here. (2.5mb)

Planning Applications…

If you want information on a particular planning application, you can find it on the District Council website here.

If you want to know what new planning applications have been submitted this week, click here.

Reporting A Problem

If you want to report a problem, you can email Lib Dems councillors by clicking here.
There's also an independent website called FixMyStreet. It's very good for reporting minor street problems like holes in the road, grafitti or failed streetlights. You can find FixMyStreet here.

Food Hygiene Ratings

To find the food hygiene rating for eating places and other businesses in our district , click here.

Essex Political Blogs

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“Rayleigh was the birthplace of Britain’s first surviving quintuplets, but that’s just one of its many claims to fame”

When the Olympic Torch came to Rayleigh, Chris Black wrote about the town in the Guardian - read it here

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