Stalybridge Labour sunk to a new low at the Stalybridge Carnival last Sunday, when their gazebo collapsed. Continue reading
BOROUGH WAS UNDERMANNED DURING LABOUR’S YEARS OF GOVERNMENT
The number of police officers for Tameside is to be increased from April onwards, after it was revealed that the borough has been undermanned for several years – thanks to the last Labour Government.
From the 1st April, an extra 15 police officers are to patrol Tameside’s streets following an audit of police numbers across Greater Manchester, which revealed that not enough police officers had been stationed in Tameside after 13 years of Labour Government.
Tameside Conservatives welcome the additional officers to Tameside, and look forward to the increased efforts to reduce the high crime figures.
The Conservative-led Coalition Government has delivered a Council Tax freeze for Tameside.
The news was announced at tonight’s meeting of Full Council.
In the forthcoming year Council Tax will not increase thanks to grant money provided by the Government.
It is the first time since 1979, when the Conservatives controlled Tameside Council, that Council Tax (or formerly, the rates) has not increased in Tameside.
For the last two years, the Conservatives have proposed Council Tax freezes in Tameside, but these were rejected by the ruling Labour Group. Now, thanks to a Conservative-led Government, Tameside residents will finally receive the Council Tax freeze they deserve.
Fat Cat Labour hike Council Tax again! (24th February 2010)
Conservative Council Tax freeze rejected by Labour (26th February 2009)
Campaigners for the return of Stalyhill’s school crossing patrol have launched a website:
The website includes the following:
- Latest news on the campaign, including press articles and a podcast that was aired on Tameside Radio;
- Reasons why Stalyhill needs a school crossing patrol, and why they should have a patrol;
- Posters to download; and,
- Simple ways in which parents, relatives and friends can help the campaign.
The website also includes a link to an online petition, which is running concurrently with the paper petition which over 300 people have so far signed.
Tameside Conservatives are supporting this campaign, so please visit the website and do your bit to safeguard the safety of local children.
SECURING A BETTER FUTURE FOR TAMESIDE’S ELDERLY TENANTS
Tameside Council is one of 50 local authorities set to receive a share of a £13 million Coalition Government grant, which will help older tenants struggling in large properties to relocate to homes they can enjoy.
The news was announced this week by Housing Minister Grant Shapps, who confirmed that older tenants struggling in Tameside to manage and heat their large family homes will have a dedicated officer to find them smaller properties more suited to their needs.
The Minister argued that this will give these people the key to finding a home they can enjoy, not endure – and can give them the security and dignity they deserve.
Ministers are clear that they will not force people to move – but want to provide a helping hand to those wanting to do so.
England has 430,000 under-occupied social homes – where tenants have two or more bedrooms more than they require. In many cases, these properties are occupied by elderly tenants whose children have since grown up and moved out. With more room than they actually need, many of these residents can become prisoners in their own homes, finding it a struggle to look after and heat the properties that are now too big for them to manage.
Tameside is one of 50 councils with the highest number of managed homes, and they will be able to use the money as they see fit to better meet the needs of their tenants, with measures such as:
- A dedicated officer to help find residents a suitable new home;
- A moving service to help tenants with every aspect of moving, from joining them on viewings to organising packing and removal services; and,
- Handymen to decorate and make repairs to their new home, including putting up shelves and installing white goods.
Mr Shapps also outlined how he is looking to back all councils across the country with a dedicated new national action team based at the Chartered Institute of Housing, available to offer practical support and advice to those councils looking to help tenants wanting to move.
He said, “Older people can become the victims of their own changed circumstances, as the homes they have lived in for years become places to endure, not enjoy. As children grow up and fly the nest, these tenants can often find themselves trapped in larger family homes that no longer meet their needs.
“That’s why I’m giving these residents the chance to start a new life in a new home that better meet their changing needs. Fifty councils from across the country will get a share of £13million to boost their efforts to make it easier for those wanting to downsize to do so.
“With a quarter of a million families in overcrowded accommodation and 1.8million households languishing on waiting lists, this will also help unlock larger family homes that are in such high demand.”
Sarah Webb, chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Housing, said, “There are over four million social homes across England and these are incredibly important to current and future tenants, communities and tax-payers. They provide a stable platform from which millions of families are able to find work, send children to school, and contribute to their local neighbourhoods.
“With millions more people looking to secure a council or housing association house we need to ensure we are making the most of the homes we’ve got – this is just as important as building new housing.
“That is why CIH is delighted to be working with government to deliver this practical help to support people who want to move to a new home that better suits their changing needs and aspirations.”
JOHN BELL (centre) WITH FELLOW LOCAL GOVERNMENT LEADERS
Tameside Conservative Leader, Cllr. John Bell, recently met with Prime Minister David Cameron at a reception hosted at 10 Downing Street, and discussed the Government’s proposals to give more power to councillors and local residents in Tameside.
The Government’s Localism Bill will lay the foundations for the Big Society by radically transforming the relationships between central government, local government, communities and individuals. It aims to strengthen local democracy by handing new powers down to councils, establishing powerful new rights for local people, overhauling the planning system, as well as making housing decisions fairer and supporting local businesses.
Commenting, Cllr. Bell said, “It was an honour to visit Downing Street and to meet with the Prime Minister to discuss the positive changes the Government are making to the way local councils are run. By putting an end to the hoarding of power within central government and the top-down control of communities, they will allow local people the freedom to run their lives and neighbourhoods in their own way.”
ERIC PICKLES – LESS POWER FOR GOVERNMENT, MORE POWER FOR LOCAL COMMUNITIES
The Localism Bill heralds a ground-breaking shift in power to councils and communities overturning decades of central government control and starting a new era of people power.
Under Labour central government has become too big, too interfering, too controlling and too bureaucratic. This has undermined local democracy in Tameside and individual responsibility, and stifled innovation and enterprise within public services.
The Government is determined to fundamentally shake up the balance of power in this country. For too long, everything has been controlled from the centre, by letting councils and communities run their own affairs we can build a stronger, fairer Britain. This signals the end of the era of big government.
This Bill will see a radical shift in the balance of power and will decentralise power as far as possible. Localism isn’t simply about giving power back to local government. This Government trusts people to take charge of their lives and we will push power downwards and outwards to the lowest possible level, including individuals, neighbourhoods, professionals and communities as well as local councils and other local institutions.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles, said, “The Localism Bill will herald a ground-breaking shift in power to councils and communities overturning decades of central government control and starting a new era of people power. It is the centrepiece of what this Government is trying to do to fundamentally shake up the balance of power in this country. For too long, everything has been controlled from the centre – and look where it’s got us.”
And he added, “By letting councils and communities run their own affairs we can build a stronger, fairer Britain. It’s the end of the era of big government.”
BASIL BEELEY, DAVID BUCKLEY & DOREEN DICKINSON AT THE OPENING OF THE NEW COPLEY YOUTH CLUB
Stalybridge South’s three Conservative councillors have welcomed the opening of a brand new youth club at Copley recreation centre.
The youth club opened last Friday, following continuous lobbying by the councillors to improve youth services in the area.
The club will serve the whole of the ward, from Millbrook to Mottram Rise; including Brushes, Copley, and the Stayley Hall area.
It follows Conservative efforts across the whole of the ward to improve facilities for young people and reduce anti-social behaviour.
Speaking following the opening of the centre, Conservative councillor, David Buckley, said, “This is a marvellous facility and one that I hope will be put to good use in the forthcoming years. It provides a base from which our youngsters can find positive outlets for their talents and enthusiasm.
“At the same time, we hope that incidents of youth annoyance will be reduced. The majority of the time our youngsters are doing nothing more than standing on a street corner in a gang, but all too often residents feel intimidated by their presence, and on occasions anti-social behaviour occurs through boredom.
“We hope this club, and the efforts we are making across the whole of the ward, will mean that residents no longer feel intimidated, and that a positive outcome is achieved for all.”
JOHN BELL BEHIND THE WHEEL AT HYDE FIRE STATION
Tameside Conservative Leader and Hyde Werneth councillor, John Bell, recently attended an open day at Hyde Fire Station, in his role as Vice Chairman of the Greater Manchester Fire Authority.
The open day gave local residents the opportunity to get a behind the scenes look at the workings of the station and the fire service, including a chance to sit in the station’s fire engines and meet members of the fire team – including the rescue dog! Also on hand were members of the local police team to discuss the work they do in the community.
John said, “The open day was a thoroughly enjoyable day and was very well attended. I would like to thank the fire team, and their counterparts in the police, for organising this event and the fabulous work they are doing for the residents of Hyde.”
PUBLIC ASSISTANCE NEEDED TO HELP 55 YEAR STALYBRIDGE TWINNING LINK LIVE ON
ABOVE: CLIVE PATRICK (left) & MAYOR BERNARD HAESEBROECK OF ARMENTIÈRES IN FRONT OF THE TWINNING CHARTER SIGNED IN 1955
Cllr. Clive Patrick, the Conservative councillor for Stalybridge North, recently took part in a twinning visit to Armentières, France.
The three-man visit was arranged by the Stalybridge Voluntary Twinning Association and their counterparts in Armentières. The trip coincided with a similar one by delegates from Armentieres’ German twin town, Osterode am Harz.
Stalybridge has been twinned with Armentières since 1955 and celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2005.
Located 60 miles from Calais, 10 miles from Lille and under one mile from the Belgian border, Armentières is a lively and thriving town with Flemish-style architecture, beautiful floral decoration, a large outdoor leisure park with water sports, children’s activities and a nature reserve, busy markets and a cultural centre offering a wide range of exhibitions and entertainment.
The importance of Stalybridge’s twinned status with Armentières cannot be overstated. The towns are bonded by two famous First World War songs – “It’s a long way to Tipperary” which was written by Jack Judge in Stalybridge, and “Mademoiselle from Armentières”. Over the years, many different school, youth and community groups from Stalybridge have exchanged visits with similar groups from Armentières and many friendships have been formed.
Cllr. Patrick said, “Although it was a pity that the Stalybridge contingent was not bigger I felt that at least one elected representative had to go on this important visit. I therefore decided to travel at my own expense, to meet our friends across the Channel.”
He added, “The German delegation numbered seven and very soon all three delegations were talking and laughing, with the help of some translation, as if we had been best of friends for years.”
Cllr. Patrick also stressed the importance of the twinning link and the need for more local people to get involved.
He said, “This vital friendship is in danger of foundering, not so much because of a lack of money, but more from the lack of help and support. It is run by a small group of dedicated private people, with the District Assembly being very generous to the Association and its activities which includes work with Stalybridge Celtic Juniors. However, if residents want to see our schoolchildren and organisations being able to continue to experience the richness of exchanges to Armentières then I urge them to come and join this overworked team.”
WATCH THE LATEST CONSERVATIVE PARTY POLITICAL BROADCAST ABOVE
In his first Party Conference speech as Prime Minister, David Cameron has laid out his vision for Government.
Speaking to Conservative Party members in Birmingham he said that just as two parties came together to form the coalition, so the entire country must now come together in the national interest. Speaking directly to the British public in a re-affirmation of his big idea of the Big Society, he said, ‘Your country needs you’.
The Prime Minister also made the case for a redefined approach to fairness – supporting people out of poverty and not trapping them in dependency. He said, “for too long we have measured success in tackling poverty by the size of the cheque we give people. We say let’s measure our success by the chance we give.”
And he restated the case for deficit reduction, pointing out that delaying action would cost Britain more. He declared, “it means that after years of cuts not only would the national debt still be growing… the problem would still be getting worse and as a result the cuts would be bigger not smaller.”
The speech brought down the curtain on the Conservative Party’s annual gathering, which was attended by more than 12,000 people, significantly up on last year.
Rob Adlard and Longdendale Conservatives are surveying local residents for their opinions about the proposed new Tesco store opposite McDonald’s at the Eastern Terminal Roundabout, Hattersley.
Rob (left) said, “Investment in our area is long overdue, and who could argue with new jobs in Hattersley? However, many fear that Labour’s failure to provide a solution to the traffic problems will be compounded by this plan.
“The traffic report compiled for Tesco has alarmed some. It suggested that new traffic lights at the entrance on Ashworth Lane would cause severe delays, and that would be ‘helpful’ in stopping Ashworth Lane being a ‘cut-through’ for people driving to Broadbottom and into the Peak.
“For locals who know these roads, it’s very easy to imagine how tailbacks from the new entrance, so close to the lights already in place on Stockport Rd, will connect up with tailbacks on the M67 roundabout causing an even worse problem than exists today. Any plan shouldn’t accept punishing locals for simply driving home.”
He added, “We’ve often argued that Labour’s local domination means that residents don’t get to hear the full story. We think this another example where Labour Councillors have taken their ‘party’ view on the issue, and are doing everything they can to discourage discussion. Contrast Labour’s silence on this issue with their mail-shots to every home whenever they have something they want to shout about, or they simply want your vote.
Rob concluded, “I hope that Tesco can find a way to invest a little more and find a better solution. Let’s start the debate.”
To read Longdendale Conservatives’ survey leaflet please click the following link: longdendale matters.tesco
DAVID CAMERON VISITS ST. PETER’S PARTNERSHIPS & LAUNCHES CRACKDOWN ON FRAUDULENT BENEFIT CLAIMS
CLLR. JOHN BELL WITH PRIME MINISTER DAVID CAMERON
David Cameron today met long-term unemployed people in Tameside – and said genuine claimants had nothing to fear from an “uncompromising” government crackdown on benefits cheats.
The Prime Minister visited St Peter’s Partnerships in Ashton-under-Lyne, a scheme which helps the jobless back to work and spoke to officers and the staff they have helped get back into a working environment.
Afterwards Mr Cameron met with Tameside Conservative Leader, Cllr. John Bell to discuss the matter and thank Tameside Conservatives for all their efforts in the recent General and local elections.
Mr. Cameron said; “This [St. Peter’s Partnerships] is a really great social enterprise that helps to get people off welfare and into work. I spoke to a man who’d been unemployed for 10 years. Can you imagine how much that does to his confidence and self-esteem? St Peter’s Partnerships is part of the big society that we want to build in this country.”
Cllr. Bell added, “It was a fabulous opportunity to meet the PM face to face and discuss this excellent venture which is absolutely at the core of the Conservative idea of big society.”
Earlier, Mr. Cameron said the state was entitled to call on outside help to try to reduce the £1.5 billion lost by taxpayers to benefit fraud every year.
He said the country needed to regain the sense that claiming benefits you were not entitled to was “morally wrong”, before and he announced an “uncompromising” crackdown on benefit cheats which will be unveiled in the autumn.
He said reducing the £5.2 billion annual cost of fraud and error would be the “first and deepest” cut in public spending and that credit rating agencies could be recruited to help identify false claims.
Mr Cameron said: “There are some people who are claiming welfare who are not entitled to it and that is just wrong and that should stop. As a country as we start to make savings to get our budget deficit under control the first cut we ought to make is the welfare payments to people who are not entitled to it.
“The system pays money inappropriately to people who are not entitled to it so we have got to make the system work better as well. Both things, fraud and error, go
“In the end it’s taxpayers’ money. People going out to work hard every day do not pay their taxes so that someone can basically claim it fraudulently. That is not right, it is not fair and I want to stop it.”
He added: “In the end, government can only do so much. We also need parents bringing up their children properly, we need citizens behaving responsibly and we need people taking responsibility for themselves for a sense that it is morally wrong to claim money you are not entitled to. We need that sense back in our national life as we grapple with this deficit and try to build a more responsible society.”
ABOVE: CLLR. CLIVE PATRICK AIMS TO LOCK OUT THE BOY RACERS FROM BUCKTON VALE
A new gate, funded from the ward monies of Cllr. Clive Patrick, is set to lock out boy racers from a Carrbrook car park.
The £750 gate has been erected to the entrance of Buckton Vale Clough car park, following years of anti-social behaviour by young car drivers.
The car park had become a nightly venue for boy racers pulling handbrake turns and ‘doughnuts’, playing loud music and drug taking.
However, thanks to the perseverance and generosity of Cllr. Patrick, the anti-social behaviour has now ground to a halt, with the gate locking out the motoring yobs.
The five barred wooden gate will be locked every night, but a narrow open section will allow walkers access to footpaths into the countryside.
Cllr. Patrick said, “I am so pleased that at last, after years of problems and a recent rise in anti-social behaviour, peace and security will be returned to Carrbrook Village.
“Loud music, drink and drug taking in the car park have long been the scourge of residents. Now, the gate will be opened first thing in the morning and closed after lights outs at the Buckton Vale Institute, and I would like to thank the residents who have very kindly volunteered to take on the task of opening and closing the gate.”
ABOVE: CLLRS JOHN BELL & DEREK BAINES SURVEY THE ‘SHODDY’ RESTORATION WORK TO POLE BANK & THE RUINED MEADOW.
Hyde Werneth’s three Conservative ward councillors have condemned ‘shoddy’ restoration work to Pole Bank Park, which has seen repairs to the lake and footpaths left abandoned and an adjacent meadow ruined.
In recent years Pole Bank has become known as the ‘forgotten park’ due to the lack of investment it has received. The urgent restoration work to the park was instigated following intense lobbying by Cllrs. John Bell, Derek Baines, and Ruth Welsh.
However, the work has been left incomplete and has lain abandoned for months.
As a result:
- The lake has been left partly drained and work to its retaining wall is half-completed;
- Footpath resurfacing work is incomplete; and,
- Pathways remain closed to public access.
- To add insult to injury, an adjacent meadow has been ruined after mud dredged from the lake was dumped on it.
The restoration work has cost local taxpayers £46,000.
The councillors are now seeking urgent assurances that the mess will be rectified as soon as possible.
Cllr. John Bell said, “We have fought for a long time to get the necessary restoration work undertaken, and we were extremely pleased when the Council announced that they would be giving it priority. Pole Bank had become the forgotten park of Tameside, but it is a little gem with a small, beautiful lake that is a haven for wildlife.
“Unfortunately, the Council’s restoration work so far has been shoddy and is now left abandoned, with pathways closed off to the public, and a meadow ruined from the mud that has been dumped on it.
“We have therefore been in contact with Council officers to ascertain when the mess is going to be cleared up and when the work is going to be completed. Pole Bank has been ruined by the work that has been undertaken so far, and we are determined to see it rectified as soon as possible.”
TAKE THAT TRIBUTE BAND & SUNSHINE ARE HIGHLIGHTS OF CHARITY EVENT
ABOVE: CLLRS. RUTH WELSH, JOHN BELL & DEREK BAINES ENJOY TOTALLY TAKE THAT
Support from Hyde Werneth’s three Conservative councillors helped this year’s Gee Cross Festival Weekend shine.
The two-day event, held on Sam Redfern Green, saw the crowd’s flock in. Tribute band Totally Take That made Saturday the greatest day for the crowds, with an energetic performance that the audience will never forget.
And sunshine and hot weather made sure the crowds came back for good for the fête the following day.
The annual festival weekend raises thousands of pounds for the Rotary Club of Hyde and Willow Wood Hospice each year, and is continually supported by local Conservative councillors John Bell, Derek Baines and Ruth Welsh, who this year provided the event with a £1,000 donation from their council ward monies.
Cllr. Bell said, “We are wholehearted supporters of this event. Not only is the festival weekend a fabulous way of raising money for the Rotary Club and Willow Wood, but it is also a great community event for Gee Cross, Hyde and the rest of Tameside. The work of both charities is amazing, and our thanks go out to everybody involved in making the festival weekend a huge success, and for the work they do for the community throughout the rest of the year.”
HYDE CONSERVATIVES SUPPORT PRE-WORLD CUP TOURNAMENT
ABOVE: Cllr. John Bell presents the trophy to the winning team watched by PC Jed Nelson
With just days to go until the World Cup in South Africa, three Hyde schools recently battled it out in their own mini football competition.
Teams from Dowson Primary, Holy Trinity, and St. George’s Primary Schools competed in a tournament organised by the local police partnership, and sponsored by Hyde Werneth’s Conservative councillors who donated the medals and winning trophy from their council ward monies.
Morrisons supplied refreshments for the battling young footballers.
The youngsters showed Fabio Capello that he was right to extend his commitment to the national squad, with a high standard of football which augers well for the future of the beautiful game.
A team from Dowson Primary eventually prevailed, and it was left to Cllr. John Bell to award the prizes at the end.
Afterwards he said, “It was a fantastic tournament and great for our local youngsters. It also illustrated the successful work our local police team is undertaking to improve the neighbourhood, and provide more activities for our young people. Cllrs. Derek Baines, Ruth Welsh and I were very happy to support them.”
BRUSHES RANGERS RECEIVE £400 GRANT FROM STALYBRIDGE CONSERVATIVE COUNCILLORS
ABOVE: Cllr. David Buckley presents the Conservatives’ donation to Brushes Rangers’ captain, Jack Shaw, watched by Cllrs. Basil Beeley, Doreen Dickinson and Rangers’ chairman, Kevin Etchells (second left).
Brushes Rangers Football Club has scored a £400 donation from Stalybridge South’s Conservative councillors.
Cllrs. David Buckley, Basil Beeley and Doreen Dickinson presented the donation to the club, prior to their recent Stalybridge & Hyde District Cup Final clash.
The donation will assist Rangers at a time when they are looking to set up a youth team to complement the three adult sides they currently run.
Cllr. Buckley said, “It’s an enormous pleasure to present Brushes Rangers with this donation. They are a thriving football club that really plays it part in the community. They deserve as much help as they can get as they try to set up a youth team, and we are only too happy to help.”
Unfortunately, the donation came too late for the Cup Final at Stalybridge Celtic’s Bower Fold ground, where Rangers lost to a much more experienced Dukinfield Town team.
BRUSHES RANGERS WANT YOU!
Brushes Rangers are looking for assistance in setting up a youth team. If you are a young player or a coach and would like to get involved then they would love to hear from you.
For more details please contact Club secretary Kevin Dawson on 07976 016935.
Alternatively, visit their website at: http://www.freewebs.com/brushesrangersfc/.
Spotted at the weekend on Roe Cross Road, Mottram, this Labour poster seemingly displays one of the more truthful statements of Labour’s entire election campaign.
Britain can benefit from immigration, but not uncontrolled immigration. That is why a Conservative government will reduce net immigration to levels of the 1990s – tens of thousands, not hundreds of thousands.
To find out more about our immigration policy please click here.
“Youth annoyance is endemic in Tameside – it is one of the biggest problems to blight neighbourhoods – and elderly and vulnerable residents can feel isolated. So why has Labour made cuts to services like youth provision?”
Youth annoyance is endemic in Tameside – it is one of the biggest problems to blight neighbourhoods – and elderly and vulnerable residents can feel isolated.
So why has Labour made cuts to services like youth provision?
We believe far much more can be done to engage our children, to ensure that they are considered a credit to our community, not a concern.
It’s not only young people that Labour has failed.
With no sense of community, our elderly and vulnerable residents can increasingly feel cut off from the neighbourhoods they have lived in for most of their lives.
This needs to change.
- Establish a new era of Sure Start community centres involving expert organisations with proven track records, to focus on the needs of families, elderly and vulnerable residents.
- Offer enhanced financial support to community groups that provide assistance to our young, elderly and vulnerable residents.
- Provide youth workers for every single ward of Tameside, with a greater use of our schools for youth activities in out-of-school hours, ensuring our young people have somewhere to go and something to do.
- Develop and maintain play areas across the borough to provide better play provision for our children
- Protect the borough’s playing fields from developers.
- Remove unnecessary waste in the Social Services budget – to ensure that help is directed where it’s needed most, faster.
YOUR CHOICE ON 6th MAY:
- A greater sense of community with the Conservatives; or,
- Continuing social break-up with Labour.