onlineFOCUS – News and Stuff For Rochford District since 2003

 

Archive for Rayleigh

Rayleigh Railway Anniversary

From Rayleigh Through The Looking Glass:

 

3rd October 2014 - Rayleigh Railway Station 125th Anniversary

At 1.30pm on Friday 3rd October we will be involved in a short ceremony  to mark the 125th anniversary of the railway coming to Rayleigh. There will also be a small photographic exhibition on the history of the railway.

Highways And Potholes

There was a lot of discussion at the Local Highways Panel last week about the frequency and quality potholes – even though the panel is not supposed to touch maintenance issues.

Chris Black took the opportunity to mention the big pothole at the junction of Mortimer Road and Eastview Drive, that Bruce Smart had reported it in January, and that the Smart household would be baking a cake to celebrate its first birthday. This caused people there to pay attention, and hopefully we will have a cake to celebrate the repair, rather than the birthday.

mortimer pothole

In the meantime, the following roads in  Downhall and Rawreth Ward are on the list for thorough repairing:

 

Bedloes Avenue

Deepdene Avenue

Hambro Parade

Kings Farm

Manns Way

 

 

 

The Cabinet System Should Be Scrapped

brocksford

 

If anyone is looking at the District Council website to try to find out who initiated the idea to build houses on Brocksford Green – well it’s not easy!

But the decision seems to have been made by the Council Executive  (the Cabinet) back in December 2012 under “Asset Review”. The officers report was private and confidential , and isn’t shown on the council website. However these are the minutes(click on them to enlarge). We can’t be 100% that this was the decision, without seeking out a copy of the confidential paperwork.

 

asset minutes

As you can see, it deals with quite a few sites. Also note that this was a meeting of the cabinet, which at that time consisted on 8 councillors, all selected by Cllr Cutmore, none of them from Rayleigh!  Ordinary ward Councillors are NOT permitted to speak at cabinet meetings ! Which meant that no Rayleigh member could have spoken on this.

If the ward Councillors had wanted to challenge this decision – well, at that time any 3 councillors could have got together to refer it to Full Council. But none of them did. And by the way, that right of referral has since been taken away by the Conservatives.

It’s time the Cabinet system was scrapped. It’s undemocratic and expensive. And it’s not even that effective – if there had been an open debate involving all Councillors in 2012, the idea would have been squelched back then, saving council officers much-needed time and money.

Amenity Space Saved, Wakering Development Squeaks Through……

At tonight’s meeting of the Development Committee:

The outline  application for 6 dwellings on the amenity space at Brocksford Avenue was refused by an overwhelming vote of councillors. Refusal was moved by  Ian  Ward and seconded by Heather Glynn. This pleased the public gallery, which was packed with concerned residents.

The application for 116 dwellings at the old Star Lane Brickworks in Great Wakering was passed – but only just. This is another one of the big sites that has come forward as part of the local plan. Chris Black and Ron Oatham moved refusal, saying that the application was contrary to our core strategy, because extra funding for the local primary school wasn’t being provided. We lost the refusal  11-9. Interestingly , none of the ward councillors supported our refusal. Cllr Mrs Wilkins voted against our refusal , Cllr Hookway was absent and Cllr Seagers declared an interest and quite properly left the chamber.  A motion of approval was then moved and the scheme was passed 14-5

The District Council applied to itself for planning permission to install a banner in Bradley Way to advertise public events – and the committee refused this , on the grounds of it being a conservation area.

A New Comedy Club For Rayleigh

The Echo reports today:

COMEDIAN and TV presenter Jason Manford is opening a comedy club in Rayleigh

The star, who presented BBC 1’s the One Show and regularly appears on shows 8 like Out of 10 Cats, will open a Manford’s Comedy Club, at the Rayleigh Mill Arts Centre, on Friday, October 3.

The full report – plus Jason’s own description of Rayleigh as a “Sleepy Essex Town” – is here.  Let’s hope it is a success.

Rayleigh Town Council Wins “Council Of the Year” For Essex !

trophy

Congratulations to Rayleigh Town Council for winning ‘Council of the Year’ by the Essex Association of Local Councils. This award was presented at the EALC’s Annual General Meeting last week when the Chairman Councillor Eddie Dray and Town Clerk Kerry Cumberland were presented with a certificate and silver platter. We understand that the Chairman of the EALC, Sheila Jackman MBE, remarked in her speech that the EALC includes all 274 Parish and Town Councils in Essex and Rayleigh Town Council won this award by a long way.

The Christmas Lights, and annual visits by schools councils (who are invited into the Council Chamber to ask the Chairman questions), were apparently two of the big points in Rayleigh’s favour.

xmas 1

A New Arts And Crafts Centre In Rayleigh?

New planning application, just submitted:

arts and crafts centre

Brocksford Green Application

The District Council Development Committee has a meeting next week on September 25th, at 7:30 pm. One major item is the application from RDC itself to build 6 new homes on a bit of open space between Brocksford Avenue and Copford Avenue in Rayleigh. Local residents and Rayleigh Town Council are objecting…

 

You can find the officers report here  – it recommends approval.

The Echo have an article on it here.

No “negative impact on safety and capacity” !

If you haven’t looked at Countryside’s masterplan for “North of London Road” , you can find it on their website here.

You can also find their opinion on the traffic situation here. Key sentences:

The Local Highway Authority, Essex County Council, has confirmed that with improvement works, traffic from the development of 550 new homes can be accommodated on the local road network without having a negative impact on safety and capacity.
——
We have carried out a Transport Assessment that considers firstly the current operation of key junctions on London Road and Rawreth Lane, and secondly their future operation should the development go ahead, taking into account both a natural background increase in traffic, and traffic associated with other proposed developments in the area, to provide a robust assessments of effects.
——-
The Transport Assessment recognises that there is existing queuing on London Road and at the Rawreth Lane/Hullbridge Road mini-roundabout, and it identifies a range of highway measures that could improve traffic flows and reduce queuing in these areas. Not all of the improvements identified in the Transport Assessment would be needed as a result of the traffic generation from the development. We would either implement appropriate highway improvements, or contribute financially to allow the Highway Authority to implement appropriate improvements, with the actual works selected from the range of possible improvements identified in the Transport Assessment, following further discussion with the Highway Authority and District Council.

We think residents will have their own views on this… We will obviously be examining this very very carefully.

Down Hall Road in the 1940s….

More local stuff from the Rochford District Community Archive. This is a brief extract:

…..At the end of Mr Thompson’s garden was the remains of a sandbagged emplacement, which I was told was a checkpoint and that anyone proceeding past had to show their identity card to the soldiers who manned it before going on to Rayleigh.

Today the pavement is very wide here where Down Hall Road joins the London Road, but at one time there was an area of grass in the middle with a couple of small trees in metal cages and I was told that when the Government appealed for aluminium saucepans to help the War Effort, this was the place where they had to be left for later collection.

Another memory I have, probably from 1946 or 1947, is sitting on my grandparents’ garden wall in Down Hall Road and saying “Hello” to the German POWs who were allowed out from Rawreth Camp (now Rawreth Industrial Estate). They wore dark brown uniforms with battledress type jackets which I think had either pink or light green diamonds or circles sewn on the back, and dark brown German style ski caps. Obviously they must have been considered harmless by that time or I wouldn’t have been allowed to sit out there on my own!….

When Houses Were Affordable….

auction 2

auction

This Month Rayleigh Through The Looking Glass looks at financial matters… including house prices…

Traffic Petition

Hullbridge Road, next to Lubards Farm

Hullbridge Road, next to Lubards Farm

Gary Congram has an e-petition on the County Council website that onlineFOCUS readers might be interested in signing:

Petition Overview:
We wish a traffic analysis to be conducted for 7 consecutive days of Lower Road, Ferry Road, Hullbridge Road and Watery Lane at a time when all roads are functional and no school or public holidays are happening during this period. Previous analysis have been done between Sept and Nov.,
Further Details:
In accordance with the Essex Resilience program and also community safety the community of Hullbridge would like to understand and identify the risks to them relating to the local highways. In order to achieve this the community need to understand, volume of traffic, types of traffic, speed of traffic, per each direction on the above mentioned roads. This needs to be per hour, per day. The community believe there has been a significant increase in the past 5 years of vehicles passing through the village especially HGV’s. The services infrastructure for the village and surrounding area run along and under these roads and some were built and not upgraded since the 1930’s and 50’s. As a result there has been a number of breakages in pipe work. There is also an increase in traffic accidents being reported as per essex highways Traffweb application http://www.essexworkstraffweb.org.uk/main.html#

You can find it and sign it here.

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Daily Reporting by Chris Black

With support from:
Ron Oatham Ron Oatham Bruce Smart Bruce Smart Chris Stanley Chris Stanley

Latest Comments

  • The Mighty Oz: Bruce, will the cake be made from Shoe Pastry…&# 8230;.
  • Jim Cripps: Election time sound bites , that is all those phrases were – be prepared for a myriad of...
  • Jim Cripps: I suggest that both the Capon Councillors leave and join Toby Mountain as an Independent Tory Group ,...
  • James Worf: Another example of the power and control the conservatives have over Rayleigh and beyond. If a councillor...
  • bruce smart: What happened to localism? Where is the Big Society? What were they in the first place?
  • bruce smart: Hindsight is a wonderful thing but even when it was built many people believed the old Park School...
  • Chris Black: I took the photo at the opening of Rayleigh Leisure Centre…
  • Angelina: Such a shame that this couple of good people who are obviously well thought of outside the Conservative...
  • Jim Cripps: I don’t know how to go about this but leaving it too Westminster is not a viable option – The...
  • The Mighty Oz: How many of the parents / carers have a car in the drive yet are more than happy to let other people...
  • A.Matthews: The cabinet system appears to have been corrupted by all it’s secrecy.For a cabinet to work it...
  • A.Matthews: Thought when they closed the Park School that was part of the agreement. When it comes to an agreement...
  • Jim Cripps: To any fair minded person , the concept of an ‘inner circle’ making all the key decisions (...
  • Gary Congram: This appears to be a common policy by Cllr Cutmore that when something relates to a specific area and a...
  • Christine Paine: Of course let’s not forget that the A129 40mph speed limit is never enforced. I haven̵...
  • Christine Paine: Jim, you’re more than likely going to be right. We already know ECC have no up-grade plans for...
  • Christine Paine: I agree I walk Susie along there every so often and try to pick a time I know it will be quiet but...
  • Collins: I walk along London Road 3 Times a day, and it is terrifying to walk on the small amount of very narrow...
  • The Mighty Oz: I’m not sure reducing the limit would make any difference whatsoever to the people that speed....
  • Ruthie: That road has too many conflicting signs! One moment is states 40 mph….a minutes drive later one sees a...
  • Ruthie: When you exclude local residents and council representation from these kind of planning meetings then you are...
  • Linda Kendall: Chris. As you well know, and I have witnessed this, even if a few of the ‘less relevantR...
  • Linda Kendall: Chris. Can you identify any meeting where the disposal of the Rayleigh Town Sports and Social Club was...
  • Jim Cripps: Christine – I too wish that the world was that idealistic , but it is’nt , development after...

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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.

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If you want to report a problem, you can email Lib Dems councillors by clicking here.
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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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