Roman Way Focus November 2014

The latest Alamein Focus newsletter is currently being delivered in Roman Way. Further Focuses will be delivered across Alamein ward over the next month To read the Roman Way Focus now click here Roman Way Focus November 2014

Focus is produced and delivered across Alamein ward by local volunteers. If you would like to help in delivery or you have any stories for us to include please contact us at [email protected]

Alamein Focus residents survey

Alamein Focus team have launched a residents’ survey to find out your views on the existing and future development of Andover.

Many local people have contacted us with concerns about this  issue . But we want to know what you think – and how these issues affect you.

The survey is currently being delivered to homes across Alamein ward but you can also access it here Alamein survey Oct 2014  The electronic version can be filled in on-line and emailed to us at [email protected] or you can print it off and post it to the address on the form.

Fill in your survey and return it today. It costs nothing – but will make a real difference.


Alamein residents’ meeting

Local residents filled the Gabriel Room at St Pauls Church for the latest residents’ forum. The meeting, organised by Alamein Community Association, allows local people to meet and quiz police, councillors and council officers on local issues.

The meeting opened with a presentation from PCSOs Peter Jones and Elly Hughes on policing issues followed by questions from the public. Gemma Sacree of Test Valley’s Community Safety team was also on hand to answer questions. A particular concern was youth nuisance in and around Smannell Road open space and the new skate park. Cllr Barbara Carpenter called for increased policing in the area and the removal of the shelter on the open space as it is a centre for trouble.

Len and Barbara discuss traffic with local resident

Len and Barbara discuss traffic with local resident

Steve Raw of Test Valley’s Planning and Transport department gave an update on traffic calming and parking controls. Barbara Carpenter, Len Gates and Cllr Phil North have a further meeting with Highways officers next month to discuss traffic calming on Smannell Road. Residents criticised the diversion of Smannell Road through Augusta Park. Len Gates explained the decision was made by borough councillors despite strong objections from councillors for the area. Local councillors also proposed an additional access road to Augusta Park but this was rejected. The plans were later ratified by a public enquiry despite further objections.

Marion Orwin raised concerns about traffic past Roman Way School and the lack of a proper crossing there.  Several other speakers also called action. Phil North explained a crossing is planned but will not be built until next year. Len Gates asked for improved signage and flashing lights like those outside Knights Enham School to be installed. Steve Raw agreed to investigate this.

Councillors Barbara Long and Steven Hardstaff gave a presentation on the Andover Town Council’s neighbourhood plan which will give local people more say in future development in the town. Local volunteers are needed to help draw up the plan.

Len Gates closed the meeting with a run down of events organised by Alamein Community Association and inviting everyone to the Association’s AGM in King Arthurs Hall at 7:30pm on 11th November. The next resident’s forum is planned for January.



Residents’ meeting

Residents of Roman Way, Swallowfields and Cricketers Way are invited to a residents’ meeting from 7:00 – 8:00pm on Friday 17th October at St Paul’s Church Centre, Smannell Road. The meeting will be attended by local police officers, town councillors and representatives of Test Valley Borough Council.

This meeting is sponsored by Alamein Community Association to allow local residents to raise matters of concern with councillors, council officers and police. If you have any particular issues you would like raised please contact the organisers below.

For further details please contact Cllr Barbara Carpenter (Andover Town Council) on 01264 338388, email [email protected] or Len Gates (Alamein Community Association) on 01264 356759, email [email protected]

How UKIP managed to loose 45% of their MEPs


UKIP’s farcical national conference and the subsequent forced resignation of Godfrey Bloom this week have brought cheer to the party’s opponents, across the political spectrum. Mr Bloom – the most ‘colourful’ character in a technicolour party – managed an unprecedented series of gaffes in the space of a single, tumultuous day. He began with the now infamous ‘sluts’ comment and ended by hitting a journalist on live TV when asked about the party’s ‘all white’ conference brochure. A tearful Nigel Farage later took to the stage to declare that his erstwhile flatmate had single-handedly “ruined our conference”. Rarely has so much bad publicity been awarded to so many by so few.

But Mr Bloom’s departure from UKIP’s delegation in Brussels and Strasbourg (he remains a party member, apparently) is far from an isolated incident. In fact, he is now the sixth UKIP MEP (out of 13) to either leave or be kicked out since the European elections in 2009. He follows Nikki Sinclaire (expelled), David Campbell-Bannerman (defected to the Tories), Mike Nattrass (de-selected and then resigned), Trevor Coleman (quit UKIP’s European grouping) and Marta Andreasen (defected to the Tories).

This means the party has lost almost half of their original MEPs since 2009. To paraphrase Oscar Wilde, losing one MEP may seem a misfortune, but to lose six seems like carelessness.  It is small consolation that UKIP have in the meantime gained one Tory defector (the climate- and LGBT-sceptic Roger Helmer MEP). Only the BNP have done worse, having lost 50% of their MEPs (one out of two) since 2009.

The irony of all this is that most voters (and even other MEPs) don’t have a clue who UKIP’s MEPs are. They are rarely seen in the influential parliamentary committee meetings where EU legislation is shaped, to the extent (as Fiona Hall MEP memorably noted in Glasgow) that UKIP’s leader is known in the corridors of Brussels and Strasbourg as ‘Mr Mirage’. Indeed the independent VoteWatch Europe website found that UKIP have the worst attendance, voting and work performance of any political party from any EU country.

The challenge is in getting the message out to voters: that backing UKIP means throwing away Britain’s influence. Luckily, Mr Bloom’s escapades have just helped to make our job as campaigners a little easier.

This article by Giles Goodall, Lib Dem European Parliamentary Candidate for South East England was originally published by Liberal Democrat Voice


Election result

I’m sure most of you know by now what the countyelection result was for those who don’t the result in Andover North was as follows

Tim Rolt (UKIP)                                                      1239

Pam Mutton (Conservative)                                   1229

Len Gates (Liberal Democrat)                               1053

Ryan Sutton (Labour)                                            404

Full results for all county council elections can be found at hantsweb

Thank you to everyone who voted for me. Your strong support on the doorstep and at the ballot box showed how important Liberal Democrat values are to the people of Andover. I and my colleagues will continue to campaign on your behalf and ensure your views are heard locally and nationally.

A message to the voters of Andover North

Dear Neighbour

I am sure you have had a lot through your door about the elections, but I wanted to send one final email to thank everyone for the warm welcome and support I have received while out canvassing. Elections are about local people and local issues.  It has been good to meet so many friends and neighbours again as I and my team have been calling round over the last few weeks. 

The campaign has gone really well, many people across Andover North have told us they want a councillor who backs their community and puts local people first. People like the fact that the Lib Dems work for their area all year round.

Many of you have told me you are worried about the future of Andover. The Conservatives have let Andover down time and again. Only last month they raised your council tax by 4%.

The election will be very close between the Lib Dems and the Conservatives, it always is, results in the 2011 borough elections were:


Liberal Democrats      41%

Conservative               52%

Labour                          6%


It is time for a change. I can, and will, fight for the changes that Andover needs. If elected I will represent everyone in Andover North regardless of politics and seek to get the best possible deal for our area. With your support we can make Andover and Hampshire a better place for all.

I hope that you will be able to support me.       

Yours sincerely

Len Gates




Public meeting in the Guildhall

Readers of the Andover Advertiser may have been surprised to read that there is to be a “public debate” between candidates for the county council elections next Tuesday. So too was I as I had not received any notification or invitation to any meeting although I since have (email from Broadway garage Friday 26 April).

Subsequently I have discovered the meeting has been organised at short notice by, and for, the UKIP candidate in Andover South and his supporters. Very few of the 16 candidates seeking election in Andover will be attending and there is also some doubt about who will chair the meeting and what format the meeting will take.

While I normally would welcome the opportunity to debate policy, these elections should be about local people and who is the best candidate to serve their area, in my case Andover North. I already have a full program of meetings with Andover North residents over the next week and it would not be appropriate to cancel them to accommodate the organisers of this event. I regret, therefore, that I will not be attending.

If any residents in Andover North wish to speak to me or ask questions I will, of course, try and deal with them by phone, email or personal visit.

Meeting Roman Way residents

Yesterday I and my campaign team spent the afternoon talking to residents in Roman Way, Caesar Close, Tiberius Road, Agricola Walk and Augustus Walk. I hope to call on other parts of Roman Way over the coming week.

Thank you to everyone for the warm and supportive response we received. I was particularly pleased to see how well town councillor Barbara Carpenter is regarded. She is a great example of how local councillors can and should represent their communities.

One issue which came up time and again was the high handed attitude of Synergy Housing towards those residents who now own their homes in the area. Synergy are doing an excellent job repairing and upgrading footpaths and car parking in and around Caesar Close. But their demands that home owners pay up without question what appears to be arbitrary amounts towards the cost are unacceptable. Synergy has a serious customer service issue here which they are reluctant to admit.

Many residents have asked me and Barbara to intervene on their behalf and we are trying to organise a meeting between Synergy and residents to air their views. To date Synergy has been reluctant to meet us. We will keep trying.