Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Carbon cut decision welcomed in Gateshead

A decision by Gateshead Council to aim to cut carbon emissions by a tenth in 2010 has been welcomed by Liberal Democrats in Gateshead.

The party’s councillors had planned to move a motion calling on Gateshead to sign up to the 10:10 Campaign but decided not to press the move when it was revealed that the Leader of the Council, Mick Henry, had agreed to the Council becoming part of the campaign.

Carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels such as coal and petrol are know to be leading to climate change and global warming. The effect has been extreme weather, such as the floods last year in the Derwent Valley.

Liberal Democrat Councillor Ione Rippeth, who planned to move the motion before it was withdrawn, said, “This is a decision we were pressing for so we are delighted Gateshead is now to join the 10:10 campaign.

“The work of cutting our carbon starts now. We can all as individuals help to achieve this. The Council, as the biggest employer and owner of buildings in Gateshead, however, can have a big impact on the overall emissions produced by the area.”

Gateshead Millenium Bridge bollard removal welcomed

The decision by Gateshead Council to remove the grey bollards placed in the River Tyne next to the Gateshead Millenium Bridge has been welcomed by a leading Liberal Democrat Councillor.

The bollards were originally installed as a requirement for the bridge to be built to protect it from collisions. But many people believe they are unnecessary and detract from the iconic design.

The final decision to remove the bollards was taken at the Gateshead Council meeting held on 10th December.

“The bollards are no longer needed to protect the bridge,” said Councillor Frank Hindle, who also hopes to become Gateshead’s new MP in the New Year.

“The Quays area is a major attraction for tourists and we are very keen that people come here and spend their money in the local economy.

“The bollards are unsightly and make the river at this point look more like motorway roadworks!

“Their removal will boost the appeal of the bridge and help bring more visitors to the area. The cost of removing them will be less than the long term cost of maintaining them.”

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Christmas Fayre in Whickham

Liberal Democrats in Blaydon Constituency will be holding a Christmas Fayre on Saturday 5th December from 10am to midday.

The fayre will be held in Whickham Community Centre on Whickham Front Street. There will be stalls selling jams, crafts, gifts and cakes.

Councillors will also be available for residents needing help or advice on local issues.

Blaydon call for better deal for our troops

collecting petitions Nov 09 no 1

LIBERAL Democrats in Blaydon constituency have launched a campaign for a better deal for our troops.

Party Leader Nick Clegg has pledged that the Liberal Democrats would raise the pay of the lowest paid soldiers by as much as £6,000. At the moment many soldiers are paid less than new police officers or fire fighters.

In Blaydon, campaigners have launched a petition backing the fair deal for our soldiers. The campaign is being led by Councillor Neil Bradbury, prospective MP for the constituency.

Neil has spent the last few weekends with his team collecting signatures in shopping centres in Blaydon, Ryton, Crawcrook and Whickham.

“Our soldiers put their lives on the line for our country,” said Neil, “but many struggle to make ends meet. That’s not right. They deserve a better deal that they are getting.

“You cannot put a price on the sacrifices made by members of our armed forces but the government can give them a better deal. It’s time we did.

“Over 100 have now signed the petition. Having spoken to many people in the village and town centres in Blaydon constituency, I know just how strongly people feel that our troops should get a better deal.”

A copy of the petition is on line at

Photo: Neil Bradbury and Councillor Sally Danys collecting signatures in Crawcrook on the fair deal for troops petition.

Keep East Coast in public hands for now – Bradbury

LIBERAL Democrats in Blaydon have called on the Government to keep the East Coast train operating company in public hands for the next five years rather than rush to privatise the service.

East Coast, the new public company set up to take over from failed National Express, began running the train services between London and the North East in November. But the Government has indicated the company will be put into private hands within two years.

Neil Bradbury, prospective MP for Blaydon, has warned that rail travellers and staff need stability.

“In the past two years three different operators have run the East Coast trains,” said Neil. “What is now needed is a period of stability. Ministers should not rush to get this route back into the private sector.

“East Coast should remain as a publicly owned operator for at least five years to ensure continuity of service and to let the route settle down after two years of upheaval and changes in operator.

“My fear is however that Labour want to privatise the service so that the huge charge on operators they imposed to run the service can fill Treasury coffers.”

Gateshead residents asked to give views on road changes

RESIDENTS of a suburb of Gateshead plagued by road problems are being asked by local Liberal Democrats about highway changes recently brought in by Gateshead Council.

Residents of Lobley Hill have raised a string of concerns about difficulties they face driving onto Lobley Hill Bank since controversial changes to the road were brought in by Gateshead Council this year.

The changes included the introduction of a bus lane, traffic lights with the junction with the A1 and realignment of an access road.

Councillor Frank Hindle, the Liberal Democrats’ prospective MP for Gateshead, is co-ordinating a survey of Lobley Hill’s residents about the difficulties they are facing.

“After the changes, many residents contacted us to tell us it is now more difficult to drive from Beechwood Gardens and Rothbury Gardens onto Lobley Hill Bank,” said Frank.

“Some people are driving through the estate to Alwinton Gardens to drive out onto the main road. Although this is quite a detour, people tell us this is often quicker than trying to use Rothbury or Beechwood Gardens.

“We decided to launch the survey so that we can get a better picture of the situation and how people are coping with the changes Gateshead Council introduced.”