Welcome to the website of the Brickhill Liberal Democrats. We hope that these pages explain the work which we are doing to help our local community, as well as providing other helpful information. If there is something further which you would like to know, just contact us direct and we will be pleased to help in any way that we can. Contact information is shown below.
We look forward to meeting with you at our forthnightly surgeries, no need to book just turn up. We will be pleased to help with any matters of concern to you.
- 21 December at Brickhill Drive shops at 10.00am
- 4 January 2014 at Avon Drive Shops at 10.00am
Bedford is open for Business
The Mayor has just published the Growth Plan for Bedford and you can see a copy on our website growth plan or the summary 30 points
These are exciting times to live in Bedford with so many things now changing for the better. We have great schools, in the last year 18 out of the 19 Local Authority maintained schools inspected by Ofsted were judged to be either good or outstanding. Schools in Bedford Borough were ranked as 11th out of 150 local authorities across the country and number one in the Eastern region. Economically also our town is thriving attracting new businesses and providing new apprenticeships and jobs. We have seen the new Waitrose, the B&Q store and with Morrisons even the petrol prices have fallen! In the town centre there are now more public toilets than ever before and the Bus Station toilets will open next week after being completely rebuilt. Even the bus station will be rebuilt next year as a part of the 8 million regeneration investment. From Saturday 23 November the first two hours of parking will be free every Saturday all year round in council owned car parks. In spite of already having to make savings of over £40 million from government, we have prioritised frontline services so that things like libraries, sports centres, road repairs, grass cutting and weekly bin collections have been protected. All this has been done whilst freezing council tax! Soon we will see the results of more funding which we have attracted to Bedford with 6 million spent on the Black Cat and millions of private investment to bring a riverside town centre development on the site of the old Town Hall with new restaurants, a cinema and even a micro brewery. In these really tough times when other councils are cutting services and increasing council tax we can be proud that we live in Bedford a town which is bucking the trend and has a very bright future.
Little Park Farm
Following the Conservatives calls for Little Park Farm in Hawk Drive, Brickhill to be made into a Gypsy and Traveller, we are pleased to announce that Mayor Dave Hodgson has agreed to sell it to prevent this from ever happening. Brickhill would never be safe in Tories hands and this is a measure for the future of our community
Read our Borough Councillor Report
This is an important opportunity for us to communicate with the parish about things which are happening in Brickhill and across the Borough. We will not produce a full report at every parish council meeting, however a couple of times each year it is important to try and give an overview of the things which we are doing to make Bedford a better place to live and visit. Of course we always dedicate ourselves to Brickhill but it is important that we also work hard to support the Mayor who works tirelessly to make ensure that our Borough achieves growth and prosperity for the benefit of all our residents.
Caught Littering in Avon Drive
Mr Andrew Broom of Grafton Road, Rushden did not appear before Magistrates but did present a guilty plea in writing in relation to a littering offence on Avon Drive, Bedford in September 2012. Taking into consideration his guilty plea, the Magistrates fined Mr Broom £75 and ordered him to pay costs of £160 and a victim surcharge of £15.
Mayor of Bedford Borough, Dave Hodgson, said: “These prosecutions are further evidence that the Council is serious about taking action against those who think it is okay to drop litter. This is a criminal act which makes our Borough untidy and costs taxpayers more than £1million every year.
“Littering is anti-social behaviour and blights the local environment for everyone. We are now prosecuting more offenders than ever before and we will maintain a zero-tolerance approach towards the minority of people who believe it is acceptable to drop litter in the borough.”
Borough Schools get top marks
Congratulations to Beachamp Middle School in June 2013 for receiving a 'Good' grade at their OFSTED
It is something of a scandal that in a week when the Borough schools have done so well in league tables measuring standards across the country, the press have been silent on the achievements. It seems that so many people have criticised our Borough schools for so long that they simply cannot bring themselves to give credit where it is due. The facts are that our primary school aged children 5-11, have come 11th out of 150 in a national league table by Ofsted. It recognises that 85% of these children will be in good or outstanding schools. Secondary children are not put into the same kind of league table but here 70% of children will be in good or outstanding schools, ahead of the national average at 69%..
So we say well done to teachers, governors, children and familes. You can read a copy of the report here yourself, the league table is on page 31.
Buses from September 2013
Brickhill is well served with buses. The following services will be operational from 1 September 2013
No 6 - Brickhill (Tyne Crescent - anticlockwise) to/from Town Centre (every 12 min during day Mon to Sat, hourly on Sun) via Rail station at peak times
First bus to town: 0553 (Mon - Fri), 0705 (Sat), 0945 (Sun)
Last from town: 2241 (Mon - Sat), 1732 (Sun)
and also from Putnoe Lane/Kimbolton Road junction
No 7 - Woodside to/from Town Centre
(every 20 min during day Mon to Sat, hourly on Sun)
No 10 - Goldington Gn/Putnoe to/from Town Centre (every 20 min during day Mon to Sat, hourly on Sun)
No 52 (One service per day - Monday to Friday)
Goldington Green to Town Centre, Marsh Leys and Cranfield via Tyne Crescent (0524) and Manton Lane (0531)
(see separate timetables for full details)
No 20/21 (6-9 services per day - Monday to Saturday)
Woodlands Park to/from Town Centre via Larkway and Kimbolton Road (3 via Manton Lane and Rail Station) (see timetable summary overleaf/back)
No 22 (One service per day - Monday to Saturday)
From Anjulita Ct to Town Centre (& Sainsburys) via Larkway & Brickhill Dr
(see timetable summary on back)
No 28 (7-11 services per day - Monday to Saturday)
From/to North East Villages along Kimbolton Road on route to/from Town Centre (only first one to via Larkway) (see timetable summary overleaf)
Full timetables are available at a number of outlets and can be seen on the Stagecoach, Grant Palmer and Bedford Borough Council websites.
Concessionary fares are valid on all services.
For Stagecoach services within the urban area it is recommended that a Dayrider is purchased for more than one journey or a 7 or 28 day Megarider for more than six journeys per week obtainable from the driver of the first bus used.
Please see this Brickhill bus timetable leaflet
Information has been compiled from published timetables by:
Peter Blakeman, 15 Dove Road, Bedford, MK41 7AA
We are working to introduce a range of measures to make Brickhill roads safer. The 20mph speed limit will soon be introduced on Tyne Crescent and in addition the 20mph signs shown opposite will be installed in Avon Drive, Waveney Avenue and Falcon Avenue. These will advise vehicles of the need to reduce speed at school times to help keep children safe. We know that reducing traffic speeds is vital to make our streets safer. If a child runs out three car lengths ahead and the driver is doing 20mph, they should just be able to stop in time. If they’re doing 30mph, they will barely have time to hit the brakes before hitting the child. We all need to slow down our speeds and this is part of achieving a long-term culture change towards creating safer road environments for all users. These zones, accompanied by new parking restrictions which will soon be implemented outside all Brickhill schools, will help keep our children safe.
Crime in Brickhill. We have purchased our own Brickhill wireless CCTV camera from our borough councillor ward funds. This is linked to the Bedford Borough Council control room and provides 24hr surveillance and recording. We deploy this in hot spots in Brickhill to nip crime in the bud and it has recently been moved to provide cover following an incidence of arson. For more information on any of these items, please visit our website www.puttingbrickhillfirst.com. If you have any concerns then please do call us direct using our contact details below, we are always pleased to help.
Pot Hole Hit Squad
The squad is dedicated to ridding Bedford of Pot Holes and they have been working across Brickhill. Read more here If you see a pithole then please call the Pot Hole Hit Squad on 01234 718003
We have received many requests to prosecute those who park vehicles on verges and pavements. As local councillors we believe that verge parking causes damage to the grass and it also damages cables in the verges, sometimes leading to costly repairs of telephone and fibre optic cables.
We have created a no verge parking zone in roads off Briockhill Drive and we are now consulting to extend this zone around roads such as Pipt Rise, Windrush and Dove Road.
Brickhill Parish Council has taken a 99 year lease on Waveney Green. This is because we all want to make sure that it stays green and is not used for further development. Call us suspicious, but when dropped kerbs are left at the end of roads leading onto green areas - we think further development is being considered. Look what happend in Westrope Way and Tyne Crescent !We have already seen the green built on in the last 15 years - we don't want any more To read more click here
Call your Liberal Democrat Councillors for help and advice
Borough Councillor Charles Royden The Vicarage, Calder Rise, Brickhill. MK41 7UY
Tel: 01234 309175 Email: email@example.com
Borough Councillor Wendy Rider 23 Orwell Close, Brickhill. MK41 7BQ Tel: 01234 303254 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Making Brickhill’s roads safer
Speeding traffic remains a problem in many parts of Brickhill. Traffic
congestion near schools is a long-running problem. We continue to work
with all the local schools, to make travel to school safer.
The new CCTV enforcement car in Dove Road with Wendy Rider,
Borough Parking Officer, Charles Royden and Mark Fitzpatrick
With Mayor Dave Hodgson, the Borough Council and the Police we have taken
enforcement action against illegal parking outside schools; we found that
the deterrent only works when the Police and parking enforcement staff are
present. A new initiative from the Liberal Democrat-led Borough Council is
the introduction of a special vehicle that will record the number plates
of cars parked illegally, which will result in fines being issued. We hope
this initiative to have a big impact, making it safer for children to get
to and from school.
Again working with Mayor Dave Hodgson, we are also tackling the backlog of
maintenance of our local roads. Where possible we are getting roads
resurfaced. If we can’t get them resurfaced we are aiming to get them
patched to a much better quality than ever before.
We hope the above notes give you some idea of the practical measures we
are taking to make Brickhill safer for all its residents.
Clapham Park Wood
We have asked for work to beging in haste to progress the nature reserve and planting of trees across the North of Brickhill. Plasn ahave been prepared for this work which should be completed as a part of the S106 agreement from planning. You may view copies of the plans here - please note this is a very large file and will take time to download.
Council Tax Bands
Council Tax Re-Banding- Shouldn’t Cost A Penny
We have been made aware of a number of residents being contacted by companies who are offering to look at their Council Tax band for a fee and save them money by lowering the band. A large number of people have been contacted in Brickhill, especially in the Tyne Crescent area. This is a serious concern for us as your local ward Councillors and we would like to let you know that it shouldn’t cost you a penny. The Valuation Office Agency(VOA) set the rates for all properties, valued by the VOA based on their open market value as at 1 April 1991.
The best way to get your Council Tax banding reviewed FOR FREE is to contact the VOA direct. This can be done via their website: www.voa.gov.uk or by telephone on: 0845 602 1507
We are also aware that some residents have been very disappointed after a review has taken place, exercise caution as the tax band can go up as well as down! We would also advise that you should have good reason to give money away to a company that promises something you can get yourself for free.
If you have had any experience on this matter recently then we would be interested to hear from you, please tell us using the contact details below. For more information visit our website www.puttingbrickhillfirst.com.
If you have any questions or concerns about this or any other issue, then please feel free to contact, or speak with us at our regular surgeries
What is that smell?
We have been asked by residents to investigate the smell which is powerfully affecting homes in Brickhill at the moment. We have been working with Borough Council officers and can confirm that it is pig muck spreading, the latest case being on fields north of Milton Ernest. We have been told by residents that it is coming from Biogen and we can confirm that this is not the case. Biogen are regulated by the Environment Agency.
There are issues relating to the spreading of manure like this and the operator has to show that they are conforming to 'Best Practicable Means,' in the code of practice issued by Defra. We are informed that there is no reason to suspect at present that this is not the case. We are continuing to investigate and will keep you posted on progress.
Helpful documents relating to this issue
If you have any comments please email us
Liberal Democrat Councillor Surgery. Bedford Central Library,
every Saturday, 2pm-3:30pm. All welcome, just turn up.