Frances Cottee Petition Reaches 1500

One of the District Council rules is that if someone submits a petition with 1500 names and addresses concerning a council issue, that issue will be debated at Full Council. It’s never happened before , but it will now, because we understand there are now 1500 names (1474 online, plus more on paper). The wording of the petition is pretty straightforward:

Petition Overview:

The Council should refuse to place homeless persons in Frances Cottee Lodge and the Clarence Road flats in Rayleigh.

This concerns the plan to use Frances Cottee Lodge to provide temporary accommodation for the homeless, and the plan to lift the restriction which currently limits the residency to those aged over 55 in the accompanying Clarence Road flats.

Local residents feel that such a hostel would be inappropriately placed in this location. Sanctuary Housing’s plans to push these changes through are being carried out with no regard for the community or the current residents of Frances Cottee Lodge and Clarence Road Flats.

The Council should refuse to use this accommodation for emergency housing and should find alternative accommodation either from property in its portfolio, or buy new property on the open market. 

Let’s see what happens next…

Crofters Site Set For Refusal

WE wrote recently about the closure of Crofters , and a planning application on the site:

Parish : Rawreth Parish Council
Ward : Downhall And Rawreth
Location : Crofters Beke Hall Chase South Rayleigh
Proposal : Outline Application To Demolish Cattery And Kennel Buildings And Enclosures And Redevelop Site To Provide Two Dwellings

Officers are now recommending it for refusal on the following grounds:

REFUSE
1
The Allocations Plan 2014 retains the site within the Metropolitan
Green Belt. The purposes of Green Belt allocation include the
prevention of unrestricted urban sprawl of large built up areas and to
assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment. It is
considered that the proposal would be in conflict with these two
purposes of Green Belt land, due to the proposed positioning further
south of the two, three bedroomed bungalow dwellings than the
existing development, further encroaching into the Green Belt.
Therefore the proposal is considered to be inappropriate development
upon Green Belt land, negatively impacting upon its open character,
contrary to Policies DM10 of the Development Man
agement Plan, GB1 of the Core Strategy as well as the Green Belt guidance provided within
the NPPF. The proposal would be contrary to Policies DM10 of the
Development Management Plan, GB1 of the Core Strategy as well as
the Green Belt guidance provided within the NPPF.
2
No heritage assessment has been undertaken as to the potential harm
to the setting of the nearby listed building
3
Notwithstanding the submission of an arboricultural assessment, it was
not possible to evaluate the potential harm to the trees on site as there
was no information submitted in respect of layout. Details of layout is a
reserved matter, and the submission of an illustrative plan is insufficient
to enable a proper assessment to be made
4
The proposed development would amount to inappropriate in the
Green Belt contrary to paragraph 89 of the NPPF. It is considered that
the proposed development would not meet the exception criteria, as it
would result in greater impact on the openness of the Green Belt and
the purpose of including land within it.
5
The Rochford District Council Development Management Plan states
that redevelopment of previously developed land in the Green Belt to
residential, retail or other uses which are more appropriately located in
town centres (e.g. office, commercial, leisure and community uses) are
not supported. Residential development should primarily be directed
towards the District’s defined residential settlements; sporadic
development that is poorly related to existing development, services
and facilities can negatively impact upon sustainability. The proposal
would not therefore represent sustainable development.

38 Degrees And The NHS

.The campaigning organisation 38 Degrees have got a website tracking the NHS in each local area – you can find it here.

They state for South and Mid Essex:

16% of patients in your area wait more than four hours to be seen in A&E. The official government target is a maximum of 5%.
£407m is the funding gap for the NHS in your area.

The Future Of Fairglen

As the Echo reports here,  the County Council has plans to improve the important Fairglen junction , where the A127 meets the A130. However they haven’t announced exactly what plans they have – they will be making an announcement to coincide with some consultation sessions.

The County Council website explains this a little further:

Options for short and long term schemes to safeguard and provide capacity to this junction until 2045 will be presented at two public information events in February.
These events are set to happen on:
Wednesday, 15 February 2017 between 1pm to 8pm at the Holiday Inn Basildon (Lakeside Suite – Waterfront Walk, Festival Leisure Park, Basildon, Essex, SS14 3DG)
Thursday, 16 February 2017 between 1pm-8pm at The King John School (Main Theatre – Shipwrights Drive, Thundersley, Benfleet, Essex, SS7 1RQ)
Funding has been secured for the majority of the short-term scheme, which is programmed to be open by 2022.
Funding for the development of the long-term scheme will be sought through bids to Central Government as well as financial support from Essex County Council and development sites along the A127 corridor.

This could be very important for all the people who drive through this junction every day.

“Every Beaten-Down Nameless Working Stuff Who Used To be Part of The Middle Class…”

Chris Black writes:

Over the past umpteen years we’ve concentrated on local stuff on onlineFOCUS. Certainly not world politics. But there’s a certain fellow in the news a lot these days and he’s been being mentioned in the comments here. This video, made by left–winger Michael Moore before the election, predicted that Trump would win and explains why. better than anything else I’ve seen. Moore voted for Hilary Clinton, but understood what a lot of Trump supporters felt.

WARNING: Bad language:

Hat-tip: www.outsidethebeltway.com

“Fragmented, inefficient and ineffective “

From the BBC website yesterday:

Simple actions to help protect homes in England from flooding are still being ignored by government, MPs say.

The Commons environment committee said ministers were not addressing what it called the fragmented, inefficient and ineffective flood management.

Areas of concern include flood impact home insurance, building rules and local authority planning decisions.

The government rejected the criticism, saying it had accepted many previous suggestions on flooding from the MPs.

The committee’s comments are the latest in a running tussle between MPs and the environment department Defra.

The MPs admit that flooding has risen up the government’s priority list, and say “considerable work” on flooding is being done across Whitehall. But they complain that ministers are still ignoring reasonable demands…..

Full report here

Food Hygiene Ratings Not Much Different

Every once in a while we look at the Food Hygiene ratings for food and drink premises in Rochford District.

Last September there were two premises with zero stars, and five with only one star. Now there is only a single place without stars (“urgent improvement necessary”) and seven with one star (“major improvement necessary”).

Find out where these places are here.

Police and Crime Commissioner proposes 3.25% precept increase to fund additional police resources

From the Commissioners website:

The Police and Crime Commissioner, Roger Hirst, has proposed a 3.25% increase in the Essex Police component of Council Tax, equivalent to £4.95 per year for a band D property….

….Mr Hirst said: “Essex police is a very lean force and have the lowest expenditure per resident of any police force in England and Wales. Essex also has one of the lowest council tax precepts for policing in the country and central government funding for policing remains constrained. My proposal to increase the Police proportion of Council Tax by £4.95 for a band D property, which is less than 10p per week, will help us respond to the changing nature of crime and provide more local, visible and accessible policing.”
The additional £3.1 million raised through this proposed increase will help fund a number of high impact programmes, including:
• The first phase of a programme to double the number of Special Constables to 700 by 2019.
• Increasing the number of police officers to 2,850, an increase of 41 officers for regular front line policing, for the Serious Crime Directorate and for additional firearm officers.
• Improving accessibility by adding 15 additional police staff in the Force Control Room to manage additional demand and improve the 101 contact service.
• Investment in dealing with digital and cybercrime and online fraud, to help tackle gangs and organised crime.
• Investment in the technology that supports the Mobile First Programme, increasing what officers can do via their smartphones on patrol, freeing up time to offer additional support to communities and improving performance management.

A Long Night At The Development Committee

The Development Committee meeting went on until 11 pm last night, and we didn’t even deal with the last item. Briefly:

REFUSED BY 13 VOTES TO NIL (Refusal moved by Chris Black, on grounds of loss of residential amenity and potential noise)

PASSED

PASSED

PASSED

REFUSED (Refusal moved by Chris Black on grounds of grazing area being below policy standard)

NOT DISCUSSED DUE TO LACK OF TIME – HELD OVER UNTIL NEXT MEETING