The Future of our High St

a couple of months ago

Running a business is no mean feat, whether that’s a one man band or an international company – I’ve had experience of them all! I’m actively involved in the day to day running of several SME’s and the time and energy commitment it HUGE!

I’ve been passionate about our High St’s for as long as I can remember. As far back as I can remember, I’ve been involved in business. When I see changes proposed for own High St in Rayleigh, sometimes good, sometime bad, it unnerves me a little. I speak to some of the retailers and they express their concerns and I really wish the Council was a more actively engaged with them, but from where I sit, I don’t see any real development of our High St.

This week our main website onlineFOCUS reports the most recent planning applications for several units in our High St. If successful, would ‘wipe out’ 3 retail spaces and potentially remove another existing business from our High St.

If you want to see our High St thrive, I urge you to head over and have a read. Please remember to comment on the councils website too!

Rayleigh Loses its CCTV

a few months ago

As new data protection laws come into force, GDPR, one service that Rayleigh Town Council was responsible for has now been ‘decommissioned’

CCTV in our town centre has been all but removed due to the new legislation that would have put demands on the resources of the Town council. Other organisations such as the Chamber of Trade have not as yet asked to take over responsibility.

Many might say our town needs CCTV, but it could be argued with such low levels of crime, coupled with the fact that all licensed premises have their own CCTV as part of their licence conditions, there is no justification to the public purse that CCTV continued to operate in the town centre.

A Load of New Bollards

6 months ago

You might remember my post sometime ago about the ‘load of old bollards‘ outside Tesco’s Express on the London Road. Well after 2 years of ‘chasing’ this issue down the car park has been redesigned, the pavement reinstated and a few bollards replaced. However they seem to have forgotten a few! So I’ve been in touch with the District Council about these works and have now received an email from the Assistant Director in the planning department to inform me that the missing bollards will be installed by 14th May 2018. Full correspondence is below (just in case the Conservatives think they will try and dismiss my work again!!

On 1 May 2018, at 16:49, <Matthew.Thomas@Rochford.gov.uk> <Matthew.Thomas@Rochford.gov.uk> wrote:
Councillor Newport
 
Further to my previous correspondence, Essex Highways have informed me that they have met with the contractor and agreed and marked on site the location for the additional bollards.
 
The contractor has arranged a site revisit on 14/05/18, to complete the unfinished works in line with the approved drawings.
 
Kind regards
 
Matthew

A Little Less Conversation…

6 months ago

…and a little more action! The fencing at the entrance to Sweyne Park has been in a state of disrepair for sometime. We’ve finally managed to get the District Council to get this replaced and the contractors have been busy today installing new fencing. Hopefully that should help kerb some of the anti social behaviour of the bridleway. “A little more bite and a little less bark” is what the Lib Dems are all about!

Annual Town Meeting

6 months ago

Last night I attended the Annual Town Meeting that Rayleigh Town Council holds…..annually, surprisingly.

It’d probably be more aptly named as an awards evening. However, it was good to see local people recognised for their hard work and efforts in our town. I was actually really surprised at some of the winners! Did you know that there is a ‘shower’ type device used by the police to wash victims of acid attacks and the inventor lives right here in Rayleigh?

With a room full of proud parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters and other family, there were plenty of smiles, especially for those happy snappers. A very well done to all the winners and good to see what talented residents we have in our local community.

I was intrigued at the level that some of the winners compete at and here’s a video of  the winner of ‘Junior Sports Person’, Danny Crouch in action  in the international junior cup.

Not Quite ‘Cutting’ The Mustard

6 months ago

It’s that time of year again, when you will see the mowers out cutting the grass verges. This service was taken back ‘in house’ by RDC last year following the setting up of the Green Gateway Trading Company and should give the Council and ultimately residents a better service.

I’ve had several complaints from residents already that the recent grass cutting isn’t up to much this year though with the grass looking like it’s been cut in a very patchy manner. I’ve emailed the Assistant Director and Portfolio to inform them of the quality which doesn’t quite cut the mustard with residents!

Important Information!! Public Notice – Grange Parade Shops

6 months ago

In case you missed it…. there is a new notice board opposite the Grange shops which Rayleigh Town Council will post important and community information notices in.

I proposed this as I felt that residents (especially those who are less computer literate) should have easy access to important information that is going on in the community. I also proposed that Rayleigh Town Council’s website was made mobile friendly and this work to redesign and update the site was carried out by a local company.

Check out the new website www.rayleightowncouncil.gov.uk

 

 

Exclusive First Look at Crown Hill New Public Toilets

6 months ago

Long time readers on the Rayleigh public toilet saga will know that I’m no superfan of the decisions made around the new toilets for the town centre. I’ve baulked at the cost of the Rochford District Councils £365,000 toilet project along with many residents and the cost shifting to Rayleigh Town Council.

The new toilets for Crown Hill are of a modular nature and have been constructed offsite. Here’s an exclusive first look at what you will see when they are finally installed.

Residents will have to wait though to test out the new facilities as there has been a delay due to an ‘oversight’ that the road will need to be closed for a crane to lift them into place and telephone lines moved….. just a slight oversight!

Tescos – Every Parking Space Helps

8 months ago

A common complaint by many residents is the lack of parking in the Tesco's Express on London Road. You will notice that in the last week or so, work has finally begun on extending the Tesco's car park to increase the number of spaces. Plans for this extension have been around for some time (over 2 years) and I have been constantly chasing the various authorities on progress.

The redesign of the car park will see bollards installed along Vernon Avenue to stop pavement parking and an extension of the double yellows. Delivery lorries will no longer be able to exit Vernon as the car park has been redesigned to allow them to turn around and exit onto London Road in a forwards motion. 

I expect this design will not please everyone but this is a site that in my opinion, should never have been allowed planning permission. If you want more information about this application the full details are here

Grumpy Christmas & Rayleigh Lights Switch On

11 months ago

Hello, Grumpy Christmas here! Yes, your resident District & Town Council has been out today with lot’s of other volunteers preparing for the ‘Rayleigh Lights Switch On!’

Chilly, isn’t the word for it, with a flurry of snow and temperatures of 3 degrees and falling, lot’s of volunteers prepared to make the night special for the families with little ones.

As my ‘little ones’ are not so little now, it takes more than a twinkle of lights to entertain them so this year we decided to stay at home with our Horlicks for the big switch on.

I won’t mention the lack of an ice rink (as Scrooge put a stop to that!) other activities that may have tempted them out into the cold and I’m sure everyone with children of primary school age children will have a lovely time waving their glowy, flashy stick things around as they stand around trying to keep warm. I’m afraid though for Grumpy Christmas he’s seen the light and unfortunately has been unable to deliver a Christmas wish for the supporters of this petition.

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