I do not get involved with politics but I am worried about increasing bureaucracy especially with our local council.
The proposition is that Westgate becomes a parish council and Margate (including Cliftonville, Garlinge and Westbrook) becomes a town council.
The consultation is ending on 29th September either on line or by getting a form from the Gateway.
There have been a few public meetings but generally I would allege that many residents do not know anything about what is going on. Everyone I have spoken to appears against the proposed town and parish councils.
It is all very well putting it on line but many people have not access, ability or interest to do this. Why has every household not been leafleted with information and a form?
It worries me that this extra layer of local governance will take place by stealth.
We have problems at the present between KCC and TDC and who deals with what. Put another layer in place and chaos rules. On top of this we are expected to pay a premium for the privilege.
We have enough trouble in this neck of the woods contacting current councillors or even getting them to attend residents' meetings so another increase in the same seems to me ridiculous.
Can anyone tell me why we should have town councils?
Follow this link to find out more: http://thanet.gov.uk/the-thanet-magazine/get-involved/consultation/2014/stage-2-margate-community-governance-review/
Wednesday, 17 September 2014
Tuesday, 16 September 2014
WESTGATE AND WESTBROOKRESIDENTS’ ASSOCIATION
MINUTES OF A GENERAL MEETING HELD AT THE TOWN HALL BUILDING ON MONDAY 8th SEPTEMBER 2014 AT 7.15PM.
Tom King, chairman and councillor, and twenty seven members.
The chairman welcomed all attending.
Apologies had been received from Ron Rolfe, Chris and Derek Smith, Tony and Pat Snow and John Vaughan.
1) Governance Review and Meetings. Tom reported there was one meeting in Westgate Pavilion on 27th August, and another at the TDC Offices on 28th September. There were approximately one hundred present at the Westgate meeting the attendance had been increased by members of the W&WRA handing out leaflets obtained from TDC, and in this way had assisted in bringing the review to the attention of local people. A straw pole showed a majority in favour of a Westgate Parish Council, some had favoured a Westgate, Westbrook, and Garlinge PC. Over the two meetings Tom had noticed only seven out of the twenty Charter Trustees had attended. The consultation is still open and may be completed online or by paper forms.
3) New Pre School. This has opened this week in St Crispin's Road and has twenty three attendees and a waiting list.
4) Beach Management Plan (TDC). Tom had been asking for a small amount of funding for children's play furniture on the old putting green by St Mildred's Bay. There had been an interest expressed to include a coffee shop on the site which could be franchised to produce revenue for TDC. If the Beach Management Plan is acted on this could be incorporated.
5) 45-51, Sea Road. Tom had spoken to the developer John Richardson about this derelict site. New plans are being submitted, number 51 is beyond repair so a new build is proposed, whilst the house at the other end is to be refurbished. The developer had spoken to a member of Westgate CAAG.
6) Trees. Tom reported he has arranged to receive details of all tree work taking place. A letter had been received from a resident in Streete Court concerning trees which have grown very large and tall. Tom had then spoken to the appropriate TDC Officer who said the best approach would be through environmental health.
7) Roads/Potholes. KCC Highways had filled in a large pothole outside St Saviour's Church, following an accident, and from 23rd/24th September resurfacing is to take place in Station Road and St Mildred's Road.
8) Double Yellow Lines. These have been placed in Harold Avenue and Westbury Road and at their junctions with St Mildred's Road to keep the corners clear and safe. “Dog Bone” lines have been put in to indicate drop kerbs.
MINUTES OF LAST MEETING
The minutes of the last meeting, (11th August 2014), which had been circulated, were adopted on a prop by Stephanie Sutton sec by Mavis Vaughan, and signed.
1) TV Reception. Stephanie Sutton reported she had again contacted our MP, and subsequently received a letter from Offcom suggesting any one affected should purchase a £200 Freesat receiving equipment set, and that the poor reception was probably due to tall trees surrounding a bungalow, (which in fact was not the case). James Brazier also reported very poor digital radio reception. Other members thought the poor TV reception was due to the mast being at Dover and in danger of interfering with french systems if the power was to be increased.
2) Governance. James Brazier felt it important that local residents should be made aware of the possible options of this, and that the survey should be used to express opinions.
3) Play Areas. Abigail Carden suggested keep fit type furniture could also be placed in areas such as the old putting green.
4) 34, Westgate Bay Avenue. In reply to a question Tom explained that the old wall had blown and had had to be taken down for safety, and a temporary metal fence had been put in. The site had been cleared but planning application refused. Tom agreed to enquire about this site with planning department.
Tom's report had been given under chairman's report, there were no other councillors or PCSOs present which was noted with regret, and it was suggested that the secretary should write to invite them to meetings.
1) Zebra Crossing. A letter had been received from Optima Care, Sea Road, requesting for consideration for a crossing in Westgate Bay Avenue. As this is a highways issue the letter will be passed to KCC Councillor Jeff Elenor.
2) Thanet M S Group. Notification of an event at Quex Park on 28th September to help sufferers and carers. Places can be booked and Tom has the details.
1) 44, Canterbury Road, (Dog and Duck). Application for permission to erect a five storey building with nine 1 bedroom flats and five 2 bedroom flats.
2) 46, Westgate Bay Avenue. Application for UPVC windows to replace timber windows.
3) 2, Barn Crescent. Application for a two storey extension at the rear.
There was no report, but Tom informed the meeting that the money collected in memory of Barbara Whitlock had been used to purchase good quality oak chairs and tables.
Tom has secured a suitable accountant who will audit the accounts, then they will be made available to members.
EDITOR’S REPORT None.
SUNSHINE REPORT None
More road stewards are still urgently required. Joanna Cornford has kindly taken on three rounds and one or two others have been taken up, but more are required.
Margate Civic Society. Next meeting Thursday 2nd October, when the AGM will be held followed by a talk “The St Peter's Village Tour and Send a Cow” by Sue Elliott Chair of St Peter's Village Tour.
Westgate Heritage Centre. Next main meeting to be held on Saturday 4th October with a talk “Westgate's Children at War 1914 – 1918”.
Richard reported sending in the W&WRA news and this was very accurately reproduced in the local press.
1) East Northdown Park Nursery, and Elham Valley outings. These had been very successful and enjoyed by all.
2) Ramsgate Caves. It is hoped to arrange a trip to see the caves.
3) Quiz Night. Next one is on 8th October.
4) Party for road stewards, helpers and members, this Wednesday 10th September.
1) Thanet Travel Forum. Next meeting at TDC Offices on Monday 22nd September 10.00 for 10.30am, with a speaker from SE Trains.
2) Public Address System. The grant from KCC through the allowance from Cllr Jeff Elenor has enabled the purchase of two systems which can be used by the W&WRA and other community groups.
3) Application for HMO. Tom confirmed that this application is for the duration of use of the John Townsend Trust only.
4) Community Centre Family Fun Day. This takes place on Sunday 14th September from 11.00am. to 4.00pm. Abigail asked for volunteers to help set up, and for distributing leaflets.
5) Barn Dances. One member recalled barn dances in the Westgate Pavilion some years ago and suggested these would make good social events.
6) New Trees in St Mildred's Road. Julian Smith asked if these were being watered, apparently they had been when first planted and it was thought that the contractor who put them in should still be responsible for this during the first summer. It had proved difficult to interest local shop and business people in care for these trees.
7) Westbrook's 1920s Beach Huts. Julian Smith suggested that TDC should be asked to take drawings of these huts following the information that some of them are beyond repair, which would allow rebuilding of new ones in the same style.
8) Beach Watch Annual Big Beach Clean. This takes place over the weekend 20th / 21st September round the entire coast of the UK, and Thanet has several beach cleans, the nearest one being at St Mildred's Bay on Saturdaay 20th September at 3.00pm.
9) St Mildred's Bay Car Park. Notices had been put up requiring parking charges to be paid by using mobile phones and credit cards, and subsequently the car park had been empty most of the time, presumably the cars being parked in the road, or visitors had gone away. Tom thought that a private car parking company had been subcontracted and agreed to find out more about it.
10) Rose Lewis. Margaret Owen noted with regret that Rose had passed away, and had sent a card to the family from the W&WRA.
11) President. Tom reported that Eileen Cunnew had gone to Norfolk House for respite care, and as she had been in frail health wished to step down from the office of president. The W&WRA therefore required a new president, and Tom had suggested that Eileen should become a vice-president.
Monday 13th October in the Westbrook Bowls Club, (to be confirmed with the club).
There being no other business the meeting concluded at 8.35pm.
Tuesday, 9 September 2014
A far reaching new plan for Thanet's Coast seeks to upgrade our beaches and bays to attract more tourism to the area. The Plan is a result of surveys and consultation. Each bay has been audited for potential refurbishment and tackling problems of litter, dog fowling and anti social behaviour. It seeks to make the area more appealing by providing more facilities like beach showers, accommodation, beach huts, cafes, an overnight motorhome park and in some cases demolishing some tired buildings and offering new concessions.
The plan seeks to overcome the problems of visitors not staying because of the lack of variety of accommodation and the lack of providers of accommodation due to lack of demand.
Some recommendations are based on the Bournemouth experience which involved all parts of the local community and could hopefully could be applied to Thanet. The Plan includes details of funding streams.
The document is 48 pages but breaks down recommendations into bays. You can read the full document by clicking on this link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bytn_kEV_nVXN21Sek9Pcl93ems/edit?usp=sharing
This plan is to be debated at November's Cabinet meeting so if you have any comments you may want to send them to your local councillors.