Devastating news for staff and #swindon about Better (GLL) giving notice to close Oasis Leisure Centre Swindon after significant losses due to covid. The landlord must find an alternative operator at the earliest opportunity, despite these difficult pandemic times.
All other Better (GLL) leisure centres are run directly for Swindon Borough Council and that should not be confused or combined with #oasis, which is separate. Last month, Swindon Conservative Councillors cabinet approved more than £400k of capital improvements to Dorcan, Haydonwick and Croft centres.
More Roadworks (well Footpath works this time), but very good news for Lavinia Walk (Taw Hill) residents.
For some years now Lavinia walk footpath has been showing signs of poor maintenance and disrepair. Since I was elected I have been applying some pressure on Taylor Wimpey (the original developer) to resolve these issues. Following some lengthy discussions and meetings, Taylor Wimpey has agreed on a scheme of works with Swindon Borough Council and will be starting on the 16th November on one side of Lavinia Walk (see highlighted area in blue on map), and should be completed by the 2nd week of December.
The other side of Lavinia Walk still has some approvals needed on the proposed scheme of works and all being well a schedule will follow the first round of works.
Once the works are completed to the required standard Swindon Borough Council can look to progress the formal highways adoption process with Taylor Wimpey.
I know some of these works will be an inconvenience as many of you are working from home, but I am also very conscious that you have been living and using these paths daily for some years in a bad state.
If you have any concerns please do let me know.
–Taylor Wimpey notice: It is proposed that a narrow footpath will be retained in front of the properties so that both you, the post man, and any other deliveries can still reach your property. This will be fenced off from the remaining area. (If you live in the surrounding area, I ask that you avoid this area for a few weeks, and take one of the other links between Melstock Road and Dydale Road if you need to pass from one to the other.) The works to the outer part of the path will be completed along with some drainage works within the cordoned off area. Once this area is made safe then the fence will be removed to give access to the remaining strip in front of the houses. Every effort will be made to maximise access but there may be the odd time when we may need to ask that you use your rear access if we are working in the area of your front door. At this stage the footway / cycleway will have a stone surface which will then need a new macadam surface to be laid. I will contact you again when we are closer to doing that as we will need access for the whole width if we are to lay the macadam surface in one continuous layer. We will make every effort to minimise any disruption and apologise for any inconvenience that might be caused. The desire to maximise access to your front doors will delay progress slightly but we still hope to complete all the works by the first or second week in December. The contractor is a local company with an excellent reputation called Bancumm Surfacing Ltd.The works will be supervised by Vine Technical Services, who are Taylor Wimpey’s consultants for this scheme. Finally, I want to thank you for the patience you have shown whilst waiting for these works to be done. I am also aware that some of you may be working from home during the pandemic, and I hope that we won’t cause too much disturbance. At least at this time of year most people have their windows closed.–
This year, like previous, there has been some lively debate about fireworks, with some strong views. Diwali is this weekend so we are likely to see a few more fireworks yet.
With this in mind, I wanted to draw your attention to an upcoming Swindon Brough Council Full Council meeting, where 2 of my fellow Councillors Steve Heyes (St Andrews Ward) and Bazil Solomon (Liden, Eldene and Park South) will be bringing forward the following motion: “This Council fully supports the current RSPCA campaign that recognises that whilst fireworks are exciting and fun for many of us, they can also pose significant problems for other people and animals. “Fireworks can be a source of fear and distress for many animals (including pet animals, farm livestock and wildlife). Animals affected not only suffer psychological distress but can also cause themselves injuries – sometimes very serious ones – as they attempt to run away or hide from the noise”.This Council resolves:Continue to require all public firework displays within the local authority boundaries to be advertised in advance of the event, allowing residents to take precautions for their animals and vulnerable people.To actively promote a public awareness campaign about the impact of fireworks on animal welfare and vulnerable people – including the precautions that can be taken to mitigate risks.To encourage local suppliers of fireworks to stock ‘quieter’ fireworks for public display.This Council Further Requests that:That the Cabinet Member for Housing and Public Safety will write to the Minister with Responsibility for Fireworks at the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, urging them to introduce legislation to limit the maximum noise level of fireworks to 90dB for those sold to the public for private display.”
I am personally supportive of this in line with the steps we can take as a local Council. My views aside I am interested in your views on this.
A revised planning application has now been submitted for a single drive-through coffee shop within the Asda car park.Previously this application was for 2 units, but it has now been revised down to one. This is partly due to concerns over the level of traffic, parking and access for deliveries in what would be a relatively small space for 2 units.
The new application addresses those concerns and provides (in my opinion) a high quality, sustainable plan, which will bring new jobs to the area.As residents of the area, I welcome your thoughts and opinion on this.
As with all planning applications any comments have to be objective and address a material planning consideration. I do not expect you to find the relevant part of the policy to convey that, but please do comment more than “I don’t want it” or “not another coffee shop”.
I welcome both negative and positive comments so I can understand the general feelings of the community and then I can provide my feedback based on combined views. email@example.com
A series of key routes in North Swindon have been identified for essential resurfacing maintenance (please see an attached plan which demonstrates the areas in question).
A start date for the works has now been confirmed with our contractors. It is anticipated that some early preparation works will take place in the week commencing 2nd November, with the resurfacing programme intending to take place from 9th November for approximately 3 weeks. The nature of the work is weather dependent, therefore this may be subject to changes or delays which will be communicated accordingly. As mentioned in my previous correspondence, we have been working with our Streetworks Team to understand the most effective way to complete the works swiftly to reduce the duration of our contractor’s presence in each location, and as such road closures have been agreed.
The proposed programme, dependent upon progress and weather conditions, is as follows:
Monday 09/11/2020 – Thursday 19/11/20208am – 6pm Phase 1 – 5 Oakhurst Way / Tortworth Road – using phased localised closures as per the attached plan.
Friday 20/11/2020 – Monday 23/11/20208am – 6pm Phase 6 Lady Lane (Roundabout north of The Blunsdon Arms)
Tuesday 24/11/2020 – Wednesday 25/11/20208am – 6pm Phase 7 Elstree Way (Roundabout south of The Friary Toby Carvery)
Thursday 26/11/2020 – Friday 27/11/20208pm – 6am Phase 8 Manor Farm Roundabout (rear of the Orbital Shopping Park)
We have agreed with our contractor to ensure that access for residents is maintained at all times, and suitable diversions have been agreed with the Streetworks Team to direct drivers around the works areas. We understand there will be some challenges and minor delays during this time so we aim to move through each of the areas as efficiently as possible. It has also been requested that between each working shift in the same location, our contractor ensures that the road is made safe to be opened for use by residents and buses.
Our contractor will be setting out advance notification signs next week, giving drivers in the area two weeks advance notice prior to the works starting along Oakhurst Way. Further advance notification signs will also be set out at Lady Lane (phase 6), Elstree Way (phase 7) and Manor Farm Roundabout (phase 8) giving the necessary two weeks’ notice to the works in these locations according to the above programme.
To supplement the advance signage, we have worked with our Communications Team to prepare a letter for each of the locations, which will be shared with residents two weeks in advance of the works in the respective affected areas in Oakhurst, Ash Brake and those adjacent to the scheme in Abbey Meads / Haydon Wick. Please find attached a copy of these letters for your information. Letter 1 should be received by Oakhurst residents early next week, with Letter 2, and Letter 3 being finalised for issue to the affected residents in the coming weeks.
In addition, we will be contacting the businesses and schools in the area over the next week to give them an opportunity to ask any questions. Swindon’s Bus Company and Stagecoach Bus are also being kept up to date as the project progresses.
If you have any concerns I will be happy to discuss them. firstname.lastname@example.org
Now I am glad to see this planning application has been rejected. However, I do not wish to see this land left empty forever, as the farm is no longer operational, it is a good location for houses, whilst keeping a good proportion of green space, the designs must be high quality and sustainable. They should fit with the existing surrounding homes.
I am certain we will see a future planning application for this land, at which point I will once again engage to ensure it meetings planning regulations and fits with the area.
A resident contacted the Swindon Advertiser about a recently removed bin yesterday. The journalist got in touch to ask for my side of the story.
Haydon wick parish council is currently undertaking a bin review across the parish. Some bins are in a state of disrepair, some are too close together and some too far apart.
Part of the review is rationalising the 200+ dog waste bins across the parish, as dog waste is no longer classified as hazardous, so can be placed in a normal bin. We have many locations where a dog waste bin is right next to a normal waste bin, or in very close proximity.
I think this message has not been widely advertised so the parish have been making use of social media to inform our residents that dog waste can be placed in a normal bin, provided it is bagged.
Any bin that is removed is done so on the basis there is another within a few mins walking distance.
Haydon wick parish inspect all 200+ bins daily and they are emptied as required.The daily inspections have played a big part in rationalising the bins in the parish.
The plan is to reduce the number plastic bin bags, and also a lot of stopping and starting of the vans as they are inspected or emptied. This is just a part of the parish reducing its carbon footprint.
Another part of the inspections has shown we need to look at bins with no cover, and look at replacing those with newer ones with lids.
“I write in reference to planning app S/LDP/19/1756 35 Voyager Drive.
I would like to register the following comments.
Voyager Drive and Apollo Close have limited parking.
Voyager Drive itself is a main through road to other parts of Oakhurst. Parking on this road is not easy and causes issues for passing traffic.
Apollo Close is a narrow and short cul-de-sac. It provides access to a few Voyager Drive residents parking and garages, along with Apollo Close residents.
Having spoken with the residents their plan is to create 2/3 parking spaces in the indicated area on their property, in order to reduce the need for the family to have to park on Voyager Drive or Apollo Close. This will compliment the 2 existing parking spaces the resident has, and make more space available road side to other neighboring residents.
The resident will try to keep some of the more mature green foliage along 2 sides of the area. This is important as we are losing too much green space to development.
I have spoken with some residents in the area and the general view is it will help the parking situation.
I do have the following questions:
Is a dropped curb required to correctly designate this as an off road parking? This could be important in future if there were enforcement action required due to access being blocked.
I would like to see some of the green space retained. I appreciate this is not public land, but when built it was designated as green space on their plot. Can a condition be placed that a percentage of the land remains green space?
I would like to see access to the parking spaces be located so it has minimal impact on others who may need to park road side.
I have attached an image with my thoughts on how best to implement, with minimal impact on other residents, whilst maintaining some green space.
Overall I am in support of the application and see no reason why we should not grant a certificate, provided it meets planning requirements.”