Bridge ward monthly report 86

A massive relief to see the USA reject Trump by 9.4 million votes.  But it took a fortnight to find out what had actually happened.  24.5 millions extra votes for the Democratic Party – candles – in the elections for the House compared to 4 years ago.  Now we just hope that the average 40% approval rate – an historic low – finally crumbles under the pressure of the latest revelations that he put his personal wealth in Russia ahead of national interest.  
Brexit has become a choice between Leave on March 29th, remain for another 21 months under a Gov’t deal before Leaving (with probably no deal for a further 2 years), Remain (probably needing another referendum to confirm), and with none of these options having a majority, I think we’ll lurch towards a no-deal Brexit until the country resolves to withdraw Article 50 so as to negotiate a full Brexit deal, and then ask again.  
Then, for some perspective – the centenary of the end of World War I.  A stupid war, that should bring perspective to the stupidity of supporting Trump or wanting Brexit.  Britain and the USA needs to get its perspective back.

A new format graphical progress report. 

Drama in the ward with a shooting in Fletcher Gate and arson triggering a terrible fire in Cattle Market. (Arrests made for both.)

Busy with a lot of reports and public meetings.  
Bridge ward is being divided into The Meadows and the city centre (with the Park estate and Castle Marina), so I’m now producing 2 graphical reports.  
In the city centre, reviewing ideas for changing some of the pedestrianisation.  
In Castle Marina, hearing of concerns about ASB in the public space by the canal.
In The Meadows, loads of public meetings – Your Choice, Your Voice;  OMTRA AGM; the new Memorial Gardens Association (MeGA); MOzES AGM; and a ward walk.  One concern coming up at these meetings is the proposed government offices by the railway station and their height. 
For the council – full Council, Police Panel, Audit committee, heritage along Carrington Street and in Hockley (The People’s Hall) – and a report on Brexit.
Political protests and meetings – Anti Brexit, John Hess meeting with a former Tory MP, an exhibition on elections – and a tribute to the Nottingham Labour MPs who didn’t get a mention, a presentation on gypsy culture, and a presentation on New Labour.  
And the arts: The Madness of George III; Alleluyah!; Killing Joke; Fahrenheit 11/9;.
Events: Christmas lights and fireworks night.  Panthers losing 4-0, not so much.
And the Remembrance.  The service, the parade, the ceremony.  The start to a new memorial.  They Shall not Grow Old.

P.S. Some solace from other cities contemplating Workplace Parking Levy.  Some sorrow for a Salop manager who was dropped.  And some gratitude to Irena Paxton for her advice, help and support in The Meadows.  


Bridge ward monthly report 85

Have sought to keep writing up progress reports this month: today (below), 20181031 230831 ab0259h home budgie style pumpkin_Fotorlast week (on parks)mid-month, and at Area 8.
The AGM of Meadows Advice Group, following on from a depressing Conservative gov’t budget statement, underlined that under the surface, people are struggling – low incomes, low or no social security.
More and more difficult housing cases are coming through.

And then the tragedy of 11 Jews shot in their synagogue as reprisal for asking people to welcome a caravan of poor people from Mexico who are seeking relief from poverty and no hope.  Shot cos Trump has been frightening people about immigrants, even by suggesting people born in the USA should have their constitutional rights revoked by his own order.  The fear is that the USA will fail the challenge.
Peanuts satire on trumo and brexit 45198400_10156944318682873_5569949902848393216_o
An expected (by some) deal with the EU fell through, but even if one is agreed in November, it’s no longer a deal, it’s a divorce bill – with no arrangement for future trading. Hence assessing the challenges of Brexit to Nottingham and attending meetings on Brexit, elsewhere a campaign stall for Remain in Hockley.

On brighter notes, Goose Fair!
We enjoyed the AMCG food festival, a celebration of local artists, a church raising funds for Macmillan’s nurses, Halloween art and black history awards.
FoML held their AGM.
I enjoyed showing some Kenyan visitors around the city centre, but not sure they did after 5 hours.
Jess Phillips came to Nottingham.
Progress on bringing County House back to life.
A visit to the Atrium to view magistrates in action.
Films: Columbus celebrated architecture and caring; First Man celebrated the first landing of man on the moon with being celebratory; other good films – Les Gardiennes, The Wife, and Peterloo; the documentary Science Fair prompted thoughts about how to excite young people about science.
Plays: you wait your whole life for plays from Nigeria and then 2 come in 2 days – New Nigerians and The Fisherman; also Kindertransport.
Oh, and finally got to see Salop 2018/19.  Good game, but tired of facile football analysis – i.e. sack the manager.  Was actually sorry for former Salop manager who lost his job at Ipswich, despite the late pre-season chaos he caused us.

Latest bits of local news:
* Police recently executed 3 search warrants, ad made 3 arrests.
* Move to London Road fire station has not quite happened. v
* Keepmoat and the city council have reached an agreement on bringing Arkwright Walk up to standard; so more houses will be made available for sale soon;
* a retractable bollard will replace an existing bollard to allow service vehicles to access Bridgeway shopping centre from the south-east car park;
* designs for the 21 flats at Meadows Police station are near completion.

Kinda realised that I’ve now done 25 years service as a local Councillor, and found it difficult to pick out real individual achievements.
Finally, we remembered the life and the contributions of former Councillor Tim Bell.

Bridge ward monthly report 84


Main effort has been making reviewing progress made in the ward (see mid-month graphic).
New development prompted debate at planning committee.  A conservation area for the Old Meadows was considered.  Astonishment that a builder decided to build a new house on Glapton Road without permission.
Hoodwinked brightened the city centre for 3 months.
Frank starred at the ward walk.
BT concede on their phone boxes in Bridgeway Centre.
Oh, and Brexit and Trump, again.
The Kavanaugh hearings were extraordinary – and even if the supreme justice candidate is appointed without deserving it, violence against young women has been given another hearing.
Trump was laughed at by the world, but the Republicans have been losing ground for some week now  and the mid-term elections could

Bridge ward monthly report 83

Main effort has been making reviewing progress made in the ward (see below and mid-month long write-up).
Otherwise. a month of sunshine meant bowls, cricket and the Maasai Cricket Warriors.
In the city centre, restoration, roof-top views and another August car park fire.
Reviewing city centre office block proposed to replace Victorian hotels and offices.
Oh, and Brexit and Trump, again.
STATUS report

Tackling anti-social behaviour and drug dealing: since the public meeting we called with Lilian Greenwood MP on June 1st, the extra Police operations has resulted in 4 warrants executed using the Misuse of Drugs Act.
Parking for local residents: permits for the remainder of the New Meadows, and for Wilford Crescent East, is planned to be introduced by the end of September.  Consultation with OMTRA has modified the introduction of yellow lines to be the minimum necessary to enable bin lorries to pass through junctions.
Improving Bridgeway Shopping Centre: no vacant units. Significant maintenance is planned. We are to update the security cameras. We are consulting on a ticketless parking scheme to give the parking spaces back to shoppers and visitors to the medical centre.
Safer traffic on Robin Hood Way: a speeding enforcement operation took place in June and another is planned for September.  The complaints of speeding has reduced following the jump in parking on the road.  However, extra yellow lines to improve visibility at the junctions will be introduced in September.
Events: dispersing traffic at the end of events has improved, but we are reviewing the noise levels from the Carnival.
Better homes: £200,000 of works to improve the grounds of NCH properties are to be agreed at the next Area 8 committee.  Mayfield Court is the next former warden complex to have their common rooms renewed.
New homes: properties on Arkwright Walk have sold quickly, but construction has slipped (additional work is needed on the road).  The council is planning 18 houses off Ainsworth Drive and 21 flats off Saffron Gardens.
Flats and apartments for young workers and students:350 flats off Crocus Street are well under way.  Designs of 420 rooms for students off Waterway Street West has gone through many iterations to improve their look from The Meadows.  Community activists have met the developers of flats and rooms off Arkwright Street to assess their desirability and impact on The Meadows.
New equipment from Queens Walk Rec.: a full multi-use games area and new keep fit equipment is planned for a February start, subject to a successful financing bid.
Victoria Embankment: knee-high railings are planned to manage the free parking on the former tennis court.
The Memorial: a new memorial holding the names of those who died in the First World War, both at home and abroad, is planned for 2019.  A heritage bid to refresh The Memorial and the Gardens is being prepared.
Pruning trees: £20,000 of works to be done.

A much longer write-up is available.