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Whitehill Online Poll

Will the recent way NBC has handled the travellers situation impact who you vote for in future council elections?

Yes I will vote for a different party / councillor than our current lot in Kidsgrove - 91.8%
No I will vote for the party / councillor who represent Kidsgrove now. - 8.2%

Kidsgrove News

Kidsgrove By Election Candidates Announced

Kidsgrove By ElectionKidsgrove residents will no doubt be getting confused at what is happening with elections in the local area this year. It appears that as a result of Kyle-Noel Taylor being forced to resign his position of councillor, Kidsgrove will have a Newcastle Borough Council By Election on the 10th of May.

This is one week after the main elections have taken place, which is sure to cause additional confusion. If Kidsgrove residents decide to ask for a Kidsgrove Town Council election to fill the void in the seat Kyle-Noel Taylor has left here then this will be another election for the Kidsgrove Ward. If residents wish to demand an election then they need to make this request to Newcastle Borough Council before the end of the month, otherwise Kidsgrove Town Council will co-opt someone on to the council to fill the void.

The candidates standing in this Kidsgrove By Election are:

  • Phil Crank – Lib Dem
  • Linda Harold – Conservative
  • Terry Turner – Labour
  • Claire Vodrey – TUSAC

Kidsgrove Recycling Centres Get a New Look

kidsgrove recycling centre tesco kidsgroveNewcastle Borough Council recycling centres at both Tesco in Kidsgrove and Freeport in Talke have had a makeover. Newcastle Borough Council has clearly invested money in making these recycling centres more appealing. Gone are the old mix of different sized and shaped containers and in their place has become some new look commercial bin style containers which look more appealing to the eye and more practical when it comes to storage.

Newcastle Borough Council has over the last few years appeared to be very keen to improve and develop recycling in all areas of the borough. It appears from driving around Kidsgrove that recycling is something which is close to many residents’ hearts and something many participate in.

It is only a shame that Newcastle Borough Council has not provided Kidsgrove residents with a facility to recycle Tetra Pak cartons at one of the local centres at Tesco Kidsgrove or Freeport Talke. This service is being offered as a trail at a few centres in the Newcastle Borough and it is a shame that Kidsgrove is not one of these locations. I’m sure that this would be a service that would be used by many Kidsgrove residents.

Comment on this story to read the views of other Kidsgrove residents in the Forum section. Register to create your Free and Easy Forum account, by clicking here.

Kidsgrove News Forum Board Changes

whitehill online articleThe Kidsgrove News section of the Forum Boards has under gone some changes to ensure better management of the content that is posted on the site. As a result ALL visitors will now have to create a FREE account, which requires a valid email address to setup. We will review your account and if approved you will need to confirm your account via an email which we will send to the email address you have provided.

We will aim to approve accounts as soon as possible, however please keep in mind that this site is run entirely on a voluntary basis. These new rules will actually make the forum more secure and manageable as any member who identifies any post which they feel breaches the site rules can click on the “warning icon” above that post and report it for moderation. The moderation team can then review this at their earliest opportunity and take necessary action.

These new rules do not apply to other sections of the Forum at the moment where you are still able to read posts as a guest, however need to become a member to post comments.

We hope that all users accept that we have taken this move to enable better management of the content of the site. It is FREE and EASY to set up a forum user account, which is why we feel this is ideal for the management of the Kidsgrove News section of the Forum Boards.

Whitehill Online Statement

whitehill online articleWe would like to make it clear that we believe the poster redrose was not a member of the Kidsgrove Labour Party as they were making out in their postings on the Forum boards. This decision has been reached following discussion with Cllr Dave Stringer and the failure to provide hard evidence for the statements that they were making.

We have removed any postings from redrose and articles based on redrose have been removed. We do not believe any truth was behind the posts made.

We do not endorse any political party and this is something that will be evident in our local election coverage. All members are reminded not to engage in purely political based postings.

Newcastle Borough Council Candidate Election Questions Asked

Newcastle Borough Council Election Questions AskedKidsgrove residents will no doubt notice that election time is fast approaching. Locally the elections at the moment are focused on Newcastle Borough Council and who will represent residents at Borough Council level. Kidsgrove itself is split up in to smaller wards, all which elect a Newcastle Borough Councillor to represent them. These councillors collectively come together to form Newcastle Borough Council.

Newcastle Borough Council only provides certain services that you will receive. For example Newcastle Borough Council manages waste collection, street cleaning, pest control, leisure and recreation … etc. however it does not maintain the highways or grit the roads in winter. Just like education, this responsibility falls to Staffordshire County Council.

As these are local elections, national issues should not be considered when voting. Residents should be concerned at who is going to do what to improve the ward that they live in, national politics is dealt with through your MP.

Kidsgrove residents are probably know very little about many of the candidates standing in the Newcastle Borough Council elections. As a result we decided to put together some key questions for all candidates to answer.

Many of the candidates probably read this website, however we have emailed these questions locally to their listed party. Hopefully they will choose to answer these questions, when they do, we will share them online with the most important people – you! If they choose not to reply, then that tells you how much they care about the local area.

All candidates please send your responses to these questions back to me, along with a photo of yourself (if possible).

Candidate Questions

  • Name:
  • Ward :
  • What do you do for a living / what is your background outside of politics?
  • What are the main local issues impacting on your ward?
  • What are you going to do to address these issues?
  • Why should residents vote for you to be their Newcastle Borough Councillor?

Do you want to be a Kidsgrove Town Councillor?

Kidsgrove Town CouncilKidsgrove Town Council currently has a vacancy for a councillor to represent Kidsgrove. This is very much a role which you do for the love of making a difference to Kidsgrove. This vacancy has come about as a result of former Labour Kidsgrove Councillor Kyle-Noel Taylor’s conviction and custodial sentence.

The residents of Kidsgrove now have the choice to decide if they want an election to decide who takes the seat on Kidsgrove Town Council. If Kidsgrove residents don’t call an election then it will be up to the existing members of Kidsgrove Town Council to co-opt someone onto the town council. Given that this decision is made by the council, then it is highly likely that the ruling Labour Party will decide the election.

Do you trust current Kidsgrove Town Councillors, like Margaret Astle who has brought shame on Kidsgrove Town Council with her unofficial website to make this choice in the best interests of Kidsgrove?

If not, then you should request an election. You simply have to write / email a request of an election to Newcastle Borough Council. You need to address any letter or email for the attention of J Sellgren. This needs to be done as soon as possible, before the end of this month.

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Post:

Returning Officer

Civic Offices

Merrial Street

Newcastle-under-Lyme

Staffs

ST5 2AG

Newcastle Borough Council to object to new Sainsbury’s in Alsager

Sainsbury Alsager BuildingKidsgrove residents will be interested to learn that Newcastle Borough Council could be objecting to the plans to build a new Sainsbury’s in Alsager because of the impact that it could have on Tesco, Kidsgrove.

Planning officers in Newcastle Borough Council say its members should object to the proposal, because it would take trade away from Tesco in Kidsgrove which will also damage the number of people visiting Kidsgrove town centre. This is an interesting line as one of the main local complaints has been that Tesco takes people away from the centre of Kidsgrove and it was the likes of Somerfield and now Home Bargains which creates the trade in Kidsgrove Town Centre.

Ssainsbury Alsager PlansThere appears to be great debate over the figures produced regarding the impact that any new Sainsbury’s store in Alsager will have on Kidsgrove. A report by Sainsbury’s suggests that a new store will not have a detrimental effect on Tesco, whereas a council survey claims that Tesco is trading below the company average.

This issue is always going to create debate. Clearly a new store in Alsager will take customers away from Kidsgrove something that Newcastle Borough Council need to consider. Maybe Newcastle Borough Council should be presenting alternative proposals this side of the boarder to entice Sainsbury’s into the local area?

Local Election Candidates Announced

Election Candidates in Kidsgrove AnnouncedButt Lane, Kidsgrove, Ravenscliffe , Talke and Newchapel Newcastle Borough Council election candidates have been announced. It makes some interesting reading with only 1 UKIP standing locally in the area, however a member of the Trade Union and Socialist Against Cuts Party is standing in the Kidsgrove ward. This could make the vote interesting as it is sure to take away some votes from the Labour Party as disgruntled voters decide to look for alternatives.

There could also be a Kidsgrove Town Council election if 10 local residents request an election before the 27th April.

Butt Lane Ward

Burgess Silvia (Lab) – Lives outside of Butt Lane Ward

Jellyman Daniel (Con) – Lives outside Butt Lane Ward

Richards Dennis (Lib Dem) – Lives in Butt Lane Ward

Kidsgrove Ward

Reginald Bailey (Lab) – Lives in Kidsgrove Ward

James Vernon (Con) – Lives outside Kidsgrove Ward

Lynda Griffiths (Lib Dem) – Lives outside Kidsgrove Ward

Claire Vodrey (TUAC) – Lives in Kidsgrove Ward

Newchapel Ward

Elsie Bates (Lab) – Lives in Newchapel Ward

Pamela Jellyman (Con) – Lives outside Newchapel Ward

Alan Brookes (Lib Dem) – Lives outside Newchapel Ward

Michael Prosser (In) – Lives in Newchapel Ward

Ravenscliffe Ward

Stephen Blair (Con) – Lives outside of Ravencliffe Ward

Geoffrey Locke (UKIP) – Lives in Ravencliffe Ward

David Stinger (Lab) – Lives in Ravencliffe Ward

Talke Ward

Janet Parsons (Lib Dem) – Lives in Talke Ward

Nicola Ralphs (Con) – Lives outside Talke Ward

Mike Stubbs (Lab) – Lives outside Talke Ward

Clough Hall Easter Egg Hunt Success

Friends of Clough Hall Park Easter Egg HuntThe Easter Egg Hunt was the first event organised by the Friends of Clough Hall Park Group. They were a bit apprehensive as to whether many youngsters would attend. 1000 leaflets were delivered to 5 primary schools and posters were erected to publicise the event. The event was due to commence at 11 am but by 10.30 am there were queues forming. From the 3 accesses to the park one could see droves of youngsters and their parents/grandparents heading across the park for the pavilion. 180 youngsters took part which exceeded expectations.

Tesco very kindly donated 36 Easter eggs to be given to the winners and a lucky dip tub was also provided for all participants. By 11.30 am all the Easter eggs had been given out and we still had to go to the 1 pm finish. Committee members were frantically visiting shops to purchase more. They purchased all the eggs remaining in the town and in the end everyone was satisfied.

Refreshments were provided in the pavilion together with lots of Easter cakes all of which were sold. It was thought that we would make a loss on our first event but the aim was for the group to introduce people to the park, some of whom had never visited before. It was amazing that a profit of £57 was made.

People commented that it was a tremendous and successful event and they gave some useful suggestions for next year’s hunt. It was good to see people enjoying their refreshments outside because the weather improved.

It is hoped that in June this year that there will be another hunt based around the Diamond Jubilee. All committee members were really hyped up and cannot wait for the next event.

Special thanks should be given to Newcastle Borough Council’s two park rangers who did a tremendous job making sure that there was no dog dirt, litter, toilets were clean and that we had all we needed in the pavilion.

THE GROUP’S NEXT PUBLIC MEETING IS ON WEDNESDAY, 23RD MAY 2012 AT 7 PM, PAVILION, CLOUGH HALL PARK, KIDSGROVE. EVERYONE WELCOME.

Additional photographs can be seen below.

Kidsgrove Councillor Banner Confirms Unofficial Site

Kidgrove Town Councillor Matthew BannerUKIP Kidsgrove Town Councillor Matthew Banner who is a member of the Kidsgrove Town Council website committee has confirmed what many Kidsgrove residents suspected regarding the validity of the kidsgrovetowncouncil.com website which has been created by Labour Kidsgrove Councillor Margaret Astle.

Councillor Banner also went on to confirm that the Twitter account @kidsgrovetowncouncil also has no link to Kidsgrove Town Council. Kidsgrove residents can no doubt work out who the owner of that Twitter account will be, when the profile page refers to the above website.

Councillor Banner confirmed that it is true that he has been tasked with designing the new Kidsgrove Town Council website which he presented the draft website to Kidsgrove Town Council in January. He also went on to confirm that no alpha or beta testing has taken place publically of this new site as amendments need to be made.

Clearly this now makes the comments and links to Margaret Astles own kidsgrovetowncouncil.com website, found on Gillian Burnetts and Margaret Astles website all the more confusing. Remember both of these Kidsgrove Councillors were claiming that this link was to the new website. Also who setup and controls this unofficial Kidsgrove Town Council Twitter account which also refers to this website?

I have to add that Kidsgrove Councillor Matthew Banner has been a shining example of how Kidsgrove Councillors should operate. Councillor Banner was exceptionally prompt with his communication and answered all the questions which we asked him. He went on to add he was willing to answer any further questions. I only hope that the official Kidsgrove Town Council website which KTC is producing is not damaged by the actions of some of his fellow Kidsgrove Councillors.

A full extract of the questions and answers provided by Kidsgrove Councillor Matthew Banner can be read below.

Further Allegations regarding Kidsgrove Town Council Members

astle kidsgrove liesEmbattled Kidsgrove Town Council is now facing more allegations, some which consider the conduct of some of the Kidsgrove Labour Party members. Kidsgrove Councillors Margaret Astle and Councillor Dave Stringer have both been criticised by long serving and dedicated County Councillor Mary Maxfield and a current Labour Councillor, who wishes to remain anonymous for fear to retribution from certain party members.

Current Kidsgrove County Councillor and former Kidsgrove Town Councillor explains the reason why she choose to resign from Kidsgrove Town Council saying, “I resigned because of their attitude and behaviour in particular Councillor Astles’ constant distasteful and abusive comments with no right to reply. I felt that I could not be in the same room as her. It was pleasing that I had many requests from the Labour Party to withdraw my resignation because in the past we had all worked together and enjoyed our relationships.”

We have also learnt the reason why Pat Harrison (UKIP) also resigned from Kidsgrove Town Council, stating that the job wasn't what she thought it would be because of certain incidents and the way in which the Town Council was run. This is been confirmed by our anonymous Labour Party member who has also confirmed that a few more current Kidsgrove Town Councillors are also considering resigning.

Kidsgrove Town Councillors are meant to do the job for the love of Kidsgrove, with everyone pulling together to make a real difference to the local community. This is not a place for people to be entering into political games and treating people without the respect that they deserve.

Kidsgrove to London Sunday Service Increased

Improved Sunday Train Service from Kidsgrove by London MidlandKidsgrove railway station users will have more trains operating on a Sunday, enabling them to take advantage of an hourly service from Kidsgrove to London. The London Midland service which stops in Kidsgrove currently operates on a 2 hourly service on Sundays, however from this weekend it will operate hourly improving the service at Kidsgrove station. This is excellent news for Kidsgrove residents and local rail users highlighting the importance of the Kidsgrove station in the rail network.

The new timetable, which started yesterday, means 11 services running from Kidsgrove to London and 10 heading from Kidsgrove to Crewe on Sundays. Mike Dalton, of London Midland, said: "London Midland is improving our services to London on Sundays with the introduction of an hourly service from Crewe. "This represents a doubling of the existing frequency and is in response to the demand we have had from customers wishing to travel to and from the capital."

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Kidsgrove Town Council Twitter Scandal?

kidsgrove town council twitter mainThe Kidsgrove Town Council revelations keep coming. Now we have been made aware that Kidsgrove Town Council has a twitter account. We searched this account on the Twitter and you will no doubt be surprised to learn that Kidsgrove Town Council is now on Twitter and the website listed is the one which Councillor Margaret Astle has setup with a confusingly similar domain name to the official Kidsgrove Town Council website.

As this Kidsgrove Town Council account implies that it is from the Kidsgrove Town Council it has actually attracted followers. We have contacted some of these followers to ask them who they thought was the actual owner of this account and the website that it links to. Unsurprising all were under the impression that this account belongs to Kidsgrove Town Council and that is Kidsgrove Town Councils website.

This leaves the question of if Kidsgrove Town Council is taking ownership of the Twitter account and the website which is referred to on this account? The Clerk of Kidsgrove Council has my email address and could answer this question in addition to those already put to her.

See for yourself the evidence of this Kidsgrove Town Council Twitter account.

Kidsgrove Bus Service Changes

d&g bus Kidsgrove to CongletonKidsgrove residents may be interested to know that from Monday 2nd April 2012, the D&G Bus Service (Route 77) will be operating on a new timetable. The new route will travel from Kidsgrove to Congleton and will operate on weekdays only.

You can obtain a copy of the timetable for this Kidsgrove bus service by clicking here. We hope that Kidsgrove residents will support the local bus service as im sure that it will be a case of it people do not use it, then they will lose it.

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Margaret Astle Caught Lying about Kidsgrove Website

astle kidsgrove liesYes Kidsgrove Town Council has another councillor caught lying about the Kidsgrove Town Council website. This issue as you are probably aware has been brought up at a Kidsgrove Town Council meeting. Kidsgrove Councillor Margaret Astle who created this unofficial Kidsgrove Town Council website has clearly set out to deceive the Kidsgrove public judging by the evidence that we have uncovered from her Official Blog.

Margaret Astle clearly refers to this as the New Town Councils Blog and Website and on clicking the link you are directed to Margaret Astle's confusing version of the Kidsgrove Town Council website.

Once again these are shameful actions of a Kidsgrove Town Councillor; bringing Kidsgrove Town Council to even more shame. It is now time that not only does she hand over the domain name in question to Kidsgrove Town Council but she also resigns her position as a councillor.

Can Kidsgrove Town Council take any more shame on this issue? See the evidence below of Councillor Margaret Astles post.

Kidsgrove Swimming Pool Summer Re-open

kidsgrove swimming poolKidsgrove residents will be pleased to hear that Kidsgrove Leisure Centre should have the main swimming pool in Kidsgrove back open by the summer. This is excellent news for Kidsgrove residents who have been forced out of Kidsgrove if they have been looking to go swimming.

Official information today has been given to County Councilor Mary Maxfield that the pool is not closing permanently.  Structural engineers are preparing plans for the repairs and Staffordshire County Council are putting in £100,000 towards the cost of the repairs which should be completed in June 2012. The amount of contribution from Newcastle Borough Council or Clough Hall Technology College is not known at  the moment.

Kidsgrove Leisure Centre has had the main pool closed for around 6 months now and the fact that nothing has been done with the roof has annoyed many local residents. It does appear that things are now about to start moving and the money has been found to fix the roof and get this community resource back open to the public. It would also be fair to expect some modernation of the Kidsgrove pool to take place why these closures are in place to ensure the long term viability of the Kidsgrove pool.

We shall watch this space to see if Kidsgrove does have a swimming pool come the summer months once again.

It is inconvenient for those people who use Kdsgrove Pool but alternative provision is available at Chesterton and Jubilee2.

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Gill Burnett joins Kidsgrove Town Council Website Comments

Gill Burnett kidsgrove town councillorThe Kidsgrove Town Council website scandal which is related to a confusing website that has been setup by Councillor Margaret Astle has taken a new twist. Prior to the revelations today this matter was very much based around one Kidsgrove Town Councillor (Margaret Astle) setting up a website with the domain name kidsgrovetowncouncil.com which is confusing visitors and residents in to being the official Kidsgrove Town Website.

This matter was discussed at Kidsgrove Town Council with the minutes showing that all Kidsgrove Town Councillors being warned about comments on the Internet and how council comments need to go through Kidsgrove Town Council official channels. Councillor Margaret Astle was asked to make it clear that her website was nothing to do with Kidsgrove Town Council, something the minutes show had not been achieved at the following Kidsgrove Town Council meeting.

Now we have evidence that Ravenscliffe Kidsgrove Councillor Gill Burnett made misleading comments on her personal blog, bringing more shame on Kidsgrove Town Council. Councillor Gill Burnett on her own personal Internet blog makes the following posting;

"Kidsgrove Town Council's new website I am pleased to report that Kidsgrove Town Council have moved forward with modernisation of the former staid council. A new website and blog is currently in the process of being developed.Please click onto this link for a preview of Kidsgrove Town Council's website . . .Of course, we would appreciate any constructive feedback regarding the new website and I will look forward to hearing from you.”

Notice that here Councillor Gill Burnett in her post is confusing the residents of Kidgrove here. The title of the post clearly states that this is Kidsgrove Town Council’s New Website and then goes on to suggest that this website is moving the council forward. She clearly is not happy with the current (Official) Kidsgrove Town Council website and then links people to Councillor Margaret Astles’ confusing unofficial Kidsgrove Town Council website.

This is clear evidence that the Kidsgrove Town Council website scandal is more deep routed than  initially appeared. Clearly Councillor Gill Burnett has also ignored the instruction at the Kidsgrove Town Council meeting and goes one step further with confusing comments about the ownership of this website.  

Councillor Margaret Astle who claims to care about Kidsgrove should hand over the domain name which is causing all the confusion to Kidsgrove Town Council to ensure that no further shame is brought on Kidsgrove.

Many residents will want to know what will the Labour controlled Kidsgrove Town Council do about the actions of these two Councillors?

See the evidence from Councillor Gill Burnetts website post below.

Easter Egg Hunt at Clough Hall Park

The Friends of Clough Hall Park in Kidsgorve is holding its first event, an EASTER EGG HUNT, SATURDAY 7th APRIL 2012, 11 am - 1 pm at Clough Hall Park, Kidsgrove.

Invitation to all primary school children. Entrance 50p per child. Every child will receive a gift and those finding the 10 clues will receive an Easter egg in addition. Refreshments will be available in the pavilion.

Please come along with your youngsters and enjoy the event, supporting the hard work of the local Kidsgrove Community.

Kidsgrove Swimming Pool Claims

kidsgrove-swimming-poolYou know it is election time when political parties try and take the claim for any good news story coming out in the media. This time it is the Kidsgrove Labour Party making the laughable claim that they got the funding for Kidsgrove Swimming Pool repairs.

What has been noticed is how non of our Kidsgrove Labour Party wanted to know when Kidsgrove Swimming Pool was closed. They were very quick to blame Newcastle Borough Council and Staffordshire County Council, with many articles appearing in the local media to this extent as well.

What we can factually report is that Kidsgrove Swimming Pool should re-open in July this year after Newcastle Borough Council and Clough Hall School agreed on funding the repairs, which is believed to be around the £100,000 mark.

This is great news for Kidsgove that the main swimming pool is going to be back in use in Kidsgrove, something that was always going to happen despite the rumours which some people were spread in the town. A project like this takes time as the damage needs to be assessed and plans put in place to identify what repairs are required and how they will be funded.

But as it seems that everyone wants to claim to getting the pool developed .... thanks to a Whitehill Online campaign we have helped secure the repairs to Kidsgrove Swimming Pool.

 

Whitehill Methodist Church Facelift

Whitehill Methodist Church KidsgroveWhitehill Methodist Church has reopened officially last Saturday after its face lift to celebrate 100 years of the church being in existence. Many local residents and guests attended the opening event of Whitehill Methodist Church, something that has been reported by County Councillor Mary Maxfield.

The opening event was an eye opener.  I could not believe that the work had been carried out and completed in 2 months to an exceptional high standard.

The entrance hall is impressive and I am sure that brides will appreciate the area when preparing to walk down the aisle.  Beyond this walls have been knocked down to provide an extension to the church area, there are doors which can be opened to extend the church area.  New carpet has been laid.  A small room off can be used for those who wish to pray.  There is a set of stairs leading to a large storage room.  As well as these alterations the kitchen and toilets have been refurbished.  The decoration is well done and it seems that those responsible for the project have thought of everything.

The event on Saturday was introduced by Rev Speed who then handed over to Alan Batho who went on to describe the project from its inception to fruition.  He was followed by a Minister who is responsible for church property thought the area.

Alan explained why the project was called "Footsteps".  Apparently many years ago when work was being carried out to the section of the Church facing Whitehill Road (the entrance used to be at the road facing the highway) concrete had been laid early in the morning and someone going to work possibly trod on the concrete and left his footprints.  The footprints led away form the church in the direction of the Co-op and I presume that people who decided on the name felt that the footsteps were leading away from the church and into the community to spread its work.  I hope I have this explanation correct.

I am sure that everyone would be welcome to view the project and have the opportunity to see what goes on in this vibrant, caring and wonderful Community church.

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Margaret Astle in Confusing Council Website

kidsgrove labour party in confusing websitesKidsgrove Labour Councillor Margaret Astle has setup and been running a confusing Kidsgrove Town Council website. We have been monitoring this issue for a while as Labour Councillor Margaret Astle has numerous websites setup in the local area, however she is not so keen to tell residents about the connection between all these websites.

We decided to report this story today as it has been picked up on from a poster in our forum boards, who has been uncovering some interesting bits of information from the Kidsgrove Town Council minutes. What is also interesting is how this unofficial Kidsgrove Town Council website that Margaret Astle has setup does not work from its direct link, however does still exist (see a view of the site below).

There was an interesting line where Margaret Astle was making out that she was thanking fellow sites for website links, when in fact she was actually linking to her own website. This website also listed all the Labour Party members of Kidsgrove Council and only had the smallest indication at the bottom of the site that this had no connection with Kidsgrove Town Council. (see images below)

If Margaret Astle really setup this website for the benefit of Kidsgrove then she should hand over this domain to Kidsgrove Town Council.

During our investigations we have also found that Kidsgrove Mayor Kyle Robinson and Astle family member is also up to the same trick of making out that website links are totally independent. It is also unsurprising, but equally comical that you will not find a link to this site on any of their websites. Responsible behaviour from local Kidsgrove Councillors?

The minutes from Kidsgrove Town Council relating to this matter can be read below, along with some evidence of what this confusing site looks like. You can then make up your own mind if this is misleading or not?

Kidsgrove Council Tax Set

Newcastle Borough Council has frozen council tax for their part for the council tax that Kidsgrove residents will have to pay for the coming year. As a result this will mean that Kidsgrove residents will see their council tax at the bands set below.

This figure includes the amount that residents have to pay to Kidsgrove Town Council and the Fire and Police service. Kidsgrove residents will take small comfort that Newcastle Borough Council has chosen to freeze their part of the council tax for the 2nd year in a row. It just leaves many residents now asking where and how the money collected will be spent by Newcastle Borough Council and Kidsgrove Town Council.

Band A: £997.17

Band B: £1140.04

Band C: 1302.90

Band D: £1465.76

Band E: £1791.48

Band F: £2117.21

Band G:£2442.93

Band H: £2931.52

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Kidsgrove Rotary Easter Egg Appeal

kidsgrove rotary club easter egg appealThe Annual Kidsgrove Rotary Club Easter Egg Appeal is under way now and the Kidsgrove Rotary Club are hoping to raise enough funds to help a local cause once again. The recipients of this year’s fundraiser are the North Staffordshire Young Carers Association and will be local to Kidsgrove and surrounding districts. The 1KG Easter Eggs have ‘The Rotary Club of Kidsgrove’ iced onto the front of them, are wrapped in cellophane and displayed in a wicker basket. We have to thank the management and staff of the local public houses, clubs, restaurants and organisations who continue to support us with this Annual fundraiser and the people of Kidsgrove and surrounding areas for their outstanding generosity. The Bleeding Wolf, our club meeting venue, has taken 2 of the Eggs on board and has dispatched one already to some lucky patron. Other venues participating in this appeal are:

The Ash, Blue Bell, Caldwell Tavern, Clough Hall, Crown Inn, (Red Street, Butt Lane & Mount Pleasant) The Cushion, Grapes, Kidsgrove Cricket Club, Kidsgrove Labour Club, King William, Millstone, Plough, Queen’s Head, Rifleman, Rising Sun, Royal Oak, The Travellers. (Goldenhill & Scholar Green) Rotarian Keith Turner has dispatched 2 Eggs amongst family and friends whilst Rotarian Carl Thomson has dispatched 1 Egg amongst his workmates. Many thanks once again to everyone for all your help and support.

Friends of Clough Hall Park Group Make Statement

clough hall park kidsgroveThe Friends of Clough Hall Park Group have released the following statement concerning the article that was published in The Sentinel regarding Kidsgrove Town Councils plans to use the Kidsgrove Youth Parliament's funds to install signs in Clough Hall Park, relating to local businesses. This initial article caused concern amongst Kidsgrove residents.

"With reference to the Sentinel's articles dated 5th and 7th March regarding plans to put up signs in Clough Hall Park, Kidsgrove, marking the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the statement that residents have turned the plans down."
"Residents have not turned down anything to do with Clough Hall Park by Kidsgrove Town Council or Kidsgrove Youth Parliament.  In fact residents, Clough Hall Residents' Association and Friends of Clough Hall Park Group have not received any information from the Council or the Youth Parliament about the proposals so how can they object?"
"These articles have caused great distress and are a complete fabrication by a person or persons unknown. Everyone wants to work together and not only regenerate the Park but to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee."


Graham Sutton Vice Chairman Friends of Clough Hall Park Group

Whitehill Online New Look

Whitehill Online New Look SiteAs you may have noticed your local website for the Kidsgrove area has a new look and feel. We have totally re-designed the website from bottom up, which not only means a cleaner and fresher look to the site, but also many more features.

Kidsgrove residents can now access the only independent local website via a wide range of devices without any changes to the look or feel of the site. This means that Kidsgrove residents accessing Whitehill Online on a mobile device or tablet will see exactly the same as a desktop computer user.

The new website naturally can cope with the higher traffic demands that are being placed on the site. We are and always will be committed to being a free independent local community website and this has not changed.

We would love to hear your views on the new look website. You can leave your comments on our Forum Boards, which is free and easy to join if you haven’t already setup a user account.

Assult at Kidsgrove Working Mens Club

Police are appealing for information after a man was assaulted outside Kidsgrove Working Men’s Club.

The incident occurred at the Hardingswood Road venue at approximately 11pm on Saturday 10 March.

A 24-year-old local man was assaulted and is currently receiving treatment at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire for facial injuries.

Anyone who witnessed the assault, or has any information, is asked to contact DC Richard Stott at Staffordshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 746 of March 13, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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Harecastle Hotel to Re-open?

harecastle hotel kidsgroveThere is much confusion in Kidsgrove at the moment as Kidsgrove residents may have noticed that the Harecastle Hotel on the corner of Liverpool Road has had the metal covered removed and work appears to be taking place inside the building.

Many Kidsgrove residents will have heard the rumours that the Harecastle Hotel will be re-opening as a Weatherspoon's, whereas others may have heard that it will be turned into apartments. We are very much in the dark as most Kidsgrove residents, however we get the feeling that it won't be long before Kidsgrove residents find out what is happening with this iconic venue.

If you know what is happening at the Harecastle Hotel, we would love to hear from you.

Kyle Noel Taylor Loses Appeal and Kidsgrove Councillor Status

kyle-noel taylor former kidsgrove councillorShamed former Labour Kidsgrove Councillor Kyle Noel Taylor has lost his appeal at Stoke-on-Trent court. As a result Kyle Noel Taylor is now a former Kidsgrove Labour Councillor and also banned from the Labour Party for 5 years.

Kyle first came to the forefront of Kidsgrove politics when Labour Councillor endorsed and mentored Kyle as an ideal resident to represent the Kidsgrove area. Kyle was always proud of his links to Mrs Astle, something that ultimately became strained. Despite having a cloud of suspicion over his head for many months, Kyle was still elected to Kidsgrove Town Council, something he appeared to be exceptionally proud of. Yet from today he is no longer a councillor and will be waking up tomorrow morning behind bars.

Labour Leader for Newcastle made some concerning comments on BBC Radio Stoke, appearing to leave the door wide open for Kyle to join the Labour Party in the future. This is clearly something that must concern all Kidsgrove residents.

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Bathpool Park Barbed Wire Concerns

bathpool barbed wire fenceKidsgrove residents will already be aware of the long running dispute over the ownership of land at Bathpool Park, Kidsgrove and the installation by the land owner of A.J. Green of a barbed wire fence on his land. It now appears though that the barbed wire fence which has been installed at Bathpool Park is a sever health and safety issue and placing the lives of many Kidsgrove residents in danger.

Whitehill Online has been sent a collection of photographs from a Kidsgrove resident who went out walking at the weekend only to find that the existing footpath through Bathpool Park has been fenced off. They did however find gaps left in the fencing which have either been left by the land owner for access to the foot paths or have been cut out probably by some disgruntled walkers who have found their footpath cut off. What it has left though is barbed wire exposed freely and metal fencing which could cause a serious injury. This is simply unacceptable for a public park which many Kidsgrove residents use.

It does appear that a dispute is taking place over the validity of the public footpath though the piece of land, with the Friends of Bathpool Park Group trying to collect evidence that this path has been used as a footpath. This involves completing a form which needs to be sent to Staffordshire Country Council. Residents who may have used the path in question (see the red section of the map) would really be advised to help out the Friends of Bathpool Group and Kidsgrove in general. You can download the required form here.

We have contacted Margaret Astle who is a member of the Friends of Bathpool Park for more information, however as ever she chooses to ignore our requests. Residents of Kidsgrove will no doubt not be surprised by this action from Margaret Astle.

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Whitehill Methodist Church 100 Years of Wordship

Whitehill Methodist Church New OutsideWhitehill Methodist Community Church During 2012, is celebrating 100 years of worship and each month various events and services will be held culminating in a Celebration Weekend in October. On Saturday 17th March at 10-30am Whitehill Methodist Church are holding an Opening of The Refurbishment event with many local dignitaries invited.

Work has been carried out in recent months, including re-vamped Kitchen and Toilets together with a new Entrance area and Foyer. On Sunday 18th March at Whitehill Methodist Church Inside3pm Whitehill Methodist Church will be holding a Dedication Service. Both events will be followed by refreshments. On Saturday 24th at 2pm Whitehill Methodist Church are holding a Spring Fayre to be opened by well-known Whitehill couple Hilda and Sid Boulton with a variety of stalls available with plenty of bargains!

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