Removing abandoned supermarket trolleys

During on of our regular checks on local footpaths the Alamein Focus team found a “new trolley park.” The photos show supermarket trolleys abandoned along the footpath between Smannell Road and Augustus Walk.

Trolleys cTrolleys d

 

 

 

 

 

We have reported this to Test Valley Environmental Services and look forward to seeing them removed.

If you see any abandoned trolleys or fly tripped litter you can report it to TVBC either

Hedges cut and tidied on King Arthur’s Way

Following several complaints received via our Focus reply slips Len Gates contacted Aster Property about poor grounds maintenance on King Arthur’s Way.

Bushes had been left uncut and overgrowing footpaths and steps or were badly cut with cuttings left in and around the hedges. Some tidying was carried out before Christmas and Aster will be reducing the sizes of some hedges later this year.

Pictures show work already carried out between Camelot Close and the footbridge across King Arthurs Way. If you know of any areas needing tidying up let your Focus team know.

Steps from Camelot Close in November

Steps from Camelot Close in November

Steps from Camelot Close today

Steps from Camelot Close today

The bridge today

The bridge today

 

 

 

Roman Way School update #2

We are pleased to report that following a meeting between local campaigners and council officers improvements to road signage will be carried out on the approach to Roman Way School.

Roman Way School West

Roman Way School approach in November 2014

 

The meeting was held in November and reported here on the Alamein Focus team website.  Among the traffic calming measures suggested by Len Gates and the campaign team was a review of existing road signs and additional signs on the road. The Focus team had previously surveyed the roads and signs outside both Roman Way and Knights Enham Schools. Photos and details were submitted to officers and discussed at the meeting.

A specific issue requested was the repositioning of the existing school sign on the approach from Newbury Road to ensure it was visible to drivers exiting the A343 King Arthurs’ Way roundabout. Details of the discussions and agreed improvements were reported in our Roman Way Focus of November.

Both the suggestions to move the sign and a request for extra “slow” signs were taken up by highways officers and have now been approved by the county council highways department. The sign has been moved and the extra road markings will be painted in February  at the same time as painting double yellow lines to prohibit parking at the school entrance. This was another measure agreed at our meeting.

The Alamein Focus team will continue to monitor road safety in the area and report back on improvements as they happen.

 

 

 

40 mph limit for Newbury Road

Enham speed limit

2008 Lib Dem councillors Robin Hughes and Len Gates campaigned for and got a 30 mph limit through Enham village..

Alamein Focus team are calling for a reduction in the speed limit along Newbury Road from Enham arch through to Enham Alamein. The current speed limit varies between 30 mph and 50 mph along this stretch of road. Enham Alamein parish council also want speed restrictions south of the village. The current 30 mph limit in Enham Alamein village was introduced after a successful campaign by Lib Dem councillors Len Gates and Robin Hughes.

Len Gates has contacted police and county councillors to get their support for the initiative and has written to highways officers asking for a review of the speed limits along this stretch of road. Andover Town Councillor Barbara Carpenter supports the campaign. “Reducing speeds would reduce noise and air pollution for residents of Roman Way, King Arthur’s Way and Lilywhite Crescent” she said. Fellow Town Councillor, Kevin Hughes, added “Many parents and children cross Newbury Road from Roman Way to Knights Enham Schools. A lower speed limit would make the journey to school safer for all of them.”

The Lib Dem proposal are to replace the existing 40 mph (Greenwich Way to King Arthur’s Way), 50 mph (King Arthur’s Way to Knights Enham) and 60 mph (Knights Enham to Enham Alamein) with simpler, safer limits of 30 mph (Enham Arch to Smannell Road) and 40 mph (Smannell Road to Enham Alamein).

The Alamein Lib Dem team have already succeeded in persuading the borough council to review traffic calming measures on Smannell Road and on Viking Way outside Roman Way School.

Residents say planning policies have failed

During November and December Alamein Liberal Democrats surveyed over 900 residents on their views of local planning policies. Replies were overwhelming critical of the Tory run council and its policies.

Over 70% of respondents agreed strongly, and a further 20% agreed, with the statement “Andover has grown with many more homes but no other facilities.” Just 5% disagreed with the statement. A similar margin of 90% called for improvements in local roads to cope with the extra traffic generated. The only crumb of comfort for planners was the overall satisfaction with the current level of affordable housing.

When asked what extras facilities were most needed 84% said more shops, 58% wanted more and better local employment and 54% wanted more/cheaper town centre parking. All of these and more were promised as the “planning gain” when the original housing plans were approved.

Commenting on the results Lib Dem spokesman Len Gates said “the Tories policy of building large numbers of homes in the hope that other benefits will follow has obviously failed. Residents have been left with massive housing developments on one side of town and nothing else. The council now need to deal with this. The Tories should not be approving more large scale housing developments in this town without making sure there are also adequate facilities to cope.”

Life-saving allergy warnings now compulsory in restaurants

peanutsRestaurants, takeaways and ready-meals will all be required to provide allergy information under a new EU law which came into force last month

Over 2 million people in the UK suffer from food allergies. They must now be informed if their food contains any of 14 ingredients that cause severe allergies including nuts, milk, celery, gluten, soya and wheat.

South East MEP Catherine Bearder commented: “This new law will make a huge difference to the lives of people with severe allergies.  Chefs and their staff already know about these ingredients but they will now have to make it clear what allergens are present in their food at point of sale and could be fined it they don’t. Providing clearer information about ingredients will prevent the number of severe allergic reactions and save lives.”

The Hampshire-based Anaphylaxis Campaign, which helps severe allergy sufferers, also welcomed the changes.  Lynne Regent, CEO of the Anaphylaxis Campaign said: “We welcome these new EU regulations and we have been actively engaged in their implementation. These new rules will enable people living with severe food allergies to feel more confident, reassured and safe whilst eating out.”

North West Hants Lib Dem spokesman Len Gates, a technical manager in the food industry, added “This shows the important improvements to food safety which can be achieved through co-operation across Europe. Food manufacturers and ingredient suppliers already routinely record allergen information on ingredients and finished products. This information can and should be available to all consumers.”

Overnight closure of Enham Arch

Enham arch photo by http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Enham arch photo by http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Andover Focus team has been advised that the Enham arch will be closed for two nights this month for repair works.

The road closure order is active from Thursday 22 January until works to cut back vegetation and repair brickwork on the bridge are completed.

It is expected that the work will take place overnight on Thursday 22nd from 22:00 to 06:00am Friday and again on Friday 23rd January from 22:00 to 06:00am Saturday.

During the closure traffic will be diverted via Newbury Road, Saxon Way and Redon Way to the Folly roundabout and then back to the Enham arch roundabout. The diversion will be clearly signposted along the entire route.

Town Council must be consulted on planning

Len Gates has written to the head of planning to ask why Andover Town Council was not consulted on the planning application for 350 new homes at Augusta Park. The application site is bordered on two sides by Andover Town parish and all traffic to the site will have to access it either by Smannell Road or Walworth Road both roads are in Andover Town. “When I read the planning officer’s report on the application I wondered why there was no comment from Andover Town Council” he said. “The extra traffic will have an adverse effect on roads in Alamein and St Mary’s wards and especially on Enham Arch and the Enham Arch roundabout but the elected representatives for these areas were not asked to comment.” Barbara Carpenter, town councillor for Alamein ward said “the new developments at Augusta Park have already increased traffic along Smannell Road adding a further 300+ car movements a day without proper consultation is unacceptable.”

The full text of the request to TVBC’s head of planning is as follows.

I have been looking at the above application and applied to speak on it at tomorrow’s northern planning committee meeting. I understand the application has now been withdrawn until a later date.

 I noticed there is no comment from Andover Town Council. Although the application site is in Smannell parish it is bounded on two sides by Andover parish and one of the most contentious issues is the extra traffic it will generate on roads in Alamein and St Mary’s wards. Under the circumstances I would expect some comment from the town council but when I spoke to town councillors they advised me ATC was not consulted.

 This to me appears contrary to the spirit, if not the letter, of planning guidance regulations.  If my memory serves me correctly for similar applications in the past all parishes affected were asked for comments and in some cases spoke at NAP.

 Given that the application is currently withdrawn pending resubmission would it be possible to request comment from Andover Town Council please.

Len and Barbara are awaiting a response from Test Valley planners and in the meantime will be ensuring local concerns about this development are conveyed to the planning department and planning committees. The application is expected to be considered by Test Valley’s Northern Area Planning Committee in February.

New classes at King Arthurs Hall

Alamein Community Association have announced two new classes taking place at King Arthurs Hall in January.

On Thursday evenings starting from 15th January there are aerobics and zumba classes – details here aerobics and zumba

Also on 15th January is a free cookery workshop – details here cookery workshop

Full details of events taking place at King Arthurs Hall are given here or What’s On at King Arthurs Hall or visit the Alamein Community Association website at http://www.alameincommunityassociation.co.uk/