Given that the Kidsgrove travellers are making the national headlines once again today and the statement produced by Newcastle Borough Council and Staffordshire Police yesterday regarding the issue, we would love to hear your thoughts (the tax payer) on the service you get from the Council and Police.
These are just three questions that we would love to hear your thoughts on. It does appear that our travelling community gets these services provided on tap and free of charge.
Maybe Kidsgrove residents should start to take advantage of this free waste collection service and leave their bags of unwanted rubbish on the Birchenwood Car Park for collection by the local council? Well if its good enough for some, then it should be good enough for everyone surly?
Clearly it should go without saying that no resident should engage in such action as this would be irresponsible and could be deemed to be fly tipping.
It has happened again! Travellers have returned to Birchenwood Car park in Kidsgrove for the 3rd time in a matter of months.
The travellers arrived on Sunday evening at around 7.30pm driving onto the car park and setting up home for what will realistically be the next week at least, give the speed at which Newcastle Borough Council acts over these issues. They will no doubt be served with the 24 hours notice to leave today, which will be ignored and the council will have to spend money applying for a court hearing to get a court order approved. This all costs money, just like the clear up process following their visit which comes direct from the pockets of the tax payer.
It is not being political when we ask questions of our council. Why are the same elected members allowing this to happen time after time, when installing a height restriction barrier could be effective in preventing entry?
Travellers have now been given until the 10th August to leave the site as a result of one being due to give birth and requiring a fixed address. This meant that the magistrate would grant the order for the 10th August at the earliest. The council are not commenting on how much it is / will cost to clean up the site or what they will do in the future to stop them getting access back onto the site.
It has also angered local residents how Newcastle Borough Council have been very quiet throughout this whole saga, something which should not be forgotten when going to the ballot box. One way to "hit" at the council is to fill in this form on elections requesting the Newcastle Borough Council retain the current 1/3 elections of the council, meaning your councillors can't get elected and then hide away for 4 years until election time.
It has also been suggested by some residents that their should be a mass protest in not paying council tax to Newcastle Borough Council. This is a strategy that could be successful IF done in numbers, however this is one to be organised by the world of social media no doubt.
Update 31/07/14 (Statement from Newcastle Borough Council and Staffordshire Police
Kidsgrove residents will get the chance to vote in the Newcastle Borough and European Elections on Thursday 23rd May. All residents will get a vote in the European elections, however if you live in the Kidsgrove or Butt Lane wards then you will have the chance to vote in the Newcastle Borough Elections.
Locally Labour currently control all the Newcastle Borough Council seats, as well as controlling the council, thus making the responsible for all of the recent decisions made by the Borough Council.
Labour would expect to easily win both seats locally, given the large Labour support, however this year it is tipped that UKIP could have a real impact, if tactical voting takes place. If this was to happen in Kidsgrove then it is possible that a real shock could be delivered to the Labour Party locally.
The turnout is expected to be low, however this is the chance for Kidsgrove residents to either cast a vote in supporting the current decisions the council has made or vote against and ask the politicians to bring about change.
Whitehill Methodist Church is hosting its annual arts and flower festival this weekend. It is open to everyone in the local Kidsgrove community. You can find more information about this event below;
Friday 11 July, 2 to 8 p.m.
Saturday 12 July 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Sunday 13 July Services
10:30 a.m. - Rev Sheila Bishop & 6 p.m. - Judith Dutton and the Singing Group
It has only been a month since Kidsgrove residents were concerned at the arrival of travellers on Birchenwood Car park in Kidgrove, yet now it appears travelers have returned to the same area.
There are reports that as we write this 2 caravans are parked on the carpark, with a blue van parked on the grassland at the far end of the car park. Staffordshire Police are reported to be parked in front of the gate and preventing any further access to the site.
It is unknown what action can be taken now as this carpark is locked in the evening and was used in the morning for football. Time will tell what will be the next developments in this story.