2022 June

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Special mention for County Councillor Andrew Kerry-Bedell (Bourne Division) – 7th June saw the launch of the Bournes Free Bus Service. The gradual withdrawal of bus services from our rural areas and the isolation of the military families at Thorney Island prompted Andrew to pull together support and financing from Parish Councils and other agencies; work with a number of parish councils and other Lib Dem Councillors (notably Tracie Bangert in Southbourne) to sort out the financing and provision of minibuses, driver-training and publicity for the service – which serves all residents in the Bournes, including the military families.

Adrian Moss

District Councillor for Harbour Villages

Transport and Infrastructure

  • Continued work with Council Officers to agree strategy on Government Levelling Up Bids for District
  • Met with residents to help identify design and landscaping improvements to Bosham Car Park
  • Considerable work on a range of Planning Applications and Appeals across the District
  • Meetings with Senior Leadership Team on Council to review major projects across the District
  • Coastal West Sussex Partnership meeting in Shoreham to look at new business opportunities for Coastal area

Housing and Communities

  • Local Plan review work – had a special meeting with Lib Dem Councillors, drafting submissions and then submitting to Chichester District Council’s Officers
  • Undertook walk round with officers of Hyde Housing sites in Bosham
  • Attended Manhood Peninsular Partnership meeting to represent Harbour Villages residents
  • As local District Councillor, attended Jubilee Events in Bosham, Fishbourne and Chidham
  • Met again with “Chichester Mens Shed” to review potential sites and have been working with District Council Officers to progress this initiative. For further information, please contact Tim Rixon, on 07764 368932or by email to [email protected]
  • Attended Parish Council meetings in Bosham, Fishbourne and Chidham and Hambrook
  • Attended Fishbourne School and Church Fête

Environment and Well-being

  • on-going work with residents and local interest groups on Harbour issues (eg: sewage discharge, seawall, pollution, bio-diversity - please see previous reports for specifics)
  • (As Group Leader: Chichester Liberal Democrat Councillors) contributed to Chichester District Council Working Group on renewable energy for/in the local area

 

Andrew Kerry-Bedell

County Councillor for the Bourne Division

Transport and infrastructure

  • (after 2 years’ effort of a band of dedicated campaigners and activists!) the Launch of The Bourne Bus to provide FREE transport to five communities finally came to fruition!
  • Bourne Bus features in the Chichester Queen's platinum jubilee parade
  • Training of two more volunteer Bourne Bus drivers and local promotion
  • Southbourne library meeting to look at ways to get more residents using its facilities
  • Provided resident support to reduce traffic and speed limits down Priors Leaze Lane
  • Contributed to WSCC’s TFG (Task and Finish Group*) on revised WSCC speed policy – which is now being referred to resident consultation. This is an important step in being able to support resident’s groups seeking go ahead for 20sPlenty in their neighbourhoods (see Maureen Corfield’s initiative in Chichester City: North)

*especially useful in allowing Councillors to look at an issue in which they have a particular interest, in more detail. They can take a variety of forms, from a detailed review to a short, sharp concentrated focus on a high-profile issue. They offer the opportunity to use a variety of more diverse working methods (working flexibly to adapt to the needs of different reviews), including making visits, and use of interviews and publicity events to encourage community participation and public engagement in overview and scrutiny).

Transport and infrastructure

  • Work to provide CHPAG help for residents to submit objections to Pallant Homes inspector appeal
  • Resolved resident issues with contract pond maintenance at Sadlers Walk Southbourne
  • Supported Chidham & Hambrook Parish in objections to unsuitable 30 home development
  • Supported Nutbourne residents defending against Lion Park estate management fee increases
  • Successful placing of a local Downs syndrome child to improve education outcomes

Environment and Wellbeing

  • Southbourne - meeting arranged with Barratt Homes re Sadlers walk and retaining wall
  • Organising (another!) meeting with Southern Water regarding sewage capacity and storm sewage
  • Contacted The Environment Agency about 10 times increase in storm sewage 2017-21

 

Bill Brisbane

District Councillor for the Chichester East Ward

Transport and Infrastructure

  • Met with residents living on Barnfied Drive about congestion and adverse traffic conditions.
  • Reviewed emerging draft Local Plan policies and made comments and suggested amendments.

Housing and Communities

  • Made comments at the Development Plan Implementation Panel (DPIP) about the merits of a specific site allocation in the Local Plan for the strategic housing allocation in Southbourne.
  • Met with a local household about their housing circumstances and liaised with The Council on their behalf.
  • Attended Planning Committee and reached decisions on six planning applications.
  • Attended a briefing session on the Council’s five year land supply.
  • Attended a briefing session on the potential supply and location of future Gypsy and Traveller sites

Environment and wellbeing

  • Commented at DPIP on alterations to the Pagham to Westhampnett strategic wildlife corridor.

 

Clare Apel

District and City Councillor for Chichester West

Transport and Infrastructure

  • CDC Local plan meeting
  • City planning meeting
  • City Council meeting

Housing and Communities

  • Meeting re: Whitehouse Farm development/Minerva Heights
  • Attended Chichester District Council of local Councils AGM
  • Pre meeting re Overview and Scrutiny meeting with CDC officers.
  • Chaired Overview and Scrutiny meeting at CDC
  • Grant and Concessions CDC meeting
  • Helped City Council with Platinum Jubilee procession and stand in Priory Park
  • Attended several street parties and park parties for the Platinum Jubilee in my ward.
  • Audit and Risk Committee Pallant House as CDC representative.
  • Chaired Community Affairs City Council meeting.
  • Pallant House meeting re conservation work.
  • Meeting with chief exec of Stonepillow
  • Attended UK Harvest pantry in Parklands, my ward.
  • Cathedral Estate AGM
  • Pallant House Board Meeting where I am CDC trustee.
  • Friends of Chartres evening meeting where I am a member of the committee representing The City Council.
  • City Council meeting re twinning
  • Meeting with other City Councillors and residents to address disabled access issue
  • Welfare Trust meeting.
  • Stonepillow trustee meeting

 

Craig Gershater

City Councillor for North ward

Transport and Infrastructure

  • Chichester City Council (CCC) Community Affairs mtg - commentary provided on provision of ’Transport Hubs’ - which should be main planning objective not an afterthought
  • Full Council Meeting

Housing and Communities

  • CCC Planning Committee - asked that Access to Healthcare should be part of the Neighbourhood Plan
  • Attended briefing mtg for up-coming visit (August) from officials from Speyer for possible friendship link with Chichester

Environment and wellbeing

  • As the LibDem designated SCFT* Public Governor for Chichester (District) - attended Strategic Development Briefing
  • Attended SCFT mtg Brighton General Hospital
  • Attended SCFT mtg on an update from SCFT NHS Board regarding changes to Chairman of the Board
  • Attended SCFT mtg of Nominations and Remunerations Committee
  • Attended SCFT mtg as Council of Governors (CoG) pre-meet prior to full CoG mtg
  • Attended SCFT CoG mtg

* SCFT: Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust

 

Gareth Evans

District Councillor for the Loxwood ward

Transport and Infrastructure

  • I have written to the case officer regarding the retail unit in Loxwood upon hearing that the S106 had not been progressed some six weeks after approval

Housing and Communities

  • Spoke to concerned residents about a proposed new village development in Plaistow of 600 new homes
  • Have met with resident groups to discuss concerns over a proposed holiday home development in Ifold and explained the planning process to them
  • Liaised with the planning officer over the Townfield Development to explore what the water neutrality solution that’s been put forward is
  • Held a district Councillor surgery at the Onslow Arms in Loxwood, The Stag Inn in Balls Cross and Craigs Coffee shop in Ifold.
  • Attended Northchapel Summer Fayre and judged their dog show
  • Took part in the Northchapel 5km run to raise funds for their Primary School

Environment and wellbeing

  • I have been supporting one resident in Loxwood who has had big issues with Hyde and has living conditions which are detrimental to her health and that of her young family. Having been refused to be placed on the housing list to bid for one of the Stonewater properties I stepped in, and CDC are now helping this resident. However, the issues with Hyde remain unacceptable in my opinion.
  • Liaised with the planning officer over the Townfield Development to explore what the water neutrality solution that’s been put forward is

 

John-Henry Bowden

District Councillor for the Chichester West Ward

Transport and Infrastructure

  • Attended Chichester District Council (CDC) Planning Committee (also of course considers Infrastructure)
  • Studied and commented in detail to CDC on the draft policies for the Local Plan Revision
  • Contributed to CDC Members' Briefing re provision for Gypsy and Traveller pitches now and for the Local Plan Revision.
  • Together with Lib Dem Councillor Clare Apel measured site for a local street furniture plan to protect disability access to the local shops

Housing and Communities

  • Took part in CDC Training re Planning Appeals and the 5-year Housing Land Supply.
  • Visit to a resident re a planning application
  • Together with Councillor Sarah Quail. visiting residents of Minerva Heights (125-ish houses now occupied of a planned 750)
  • Alongside many Lib Dem Councillors, supported the event for Ukrainian Refugees put on by Children on the Edge and Sanctuary Chi

Environment and Wellbeing

  • Contributed to CDC Members' Briefing re provision for Gypsy and Traveller pitches.

 

Jonathan Brown

District Councillor for Southbourne ward

TRANSPORT and INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Assisted the Group Leader in working on the Council's bid for 'Levelling Up' funding for local infrastructure improvements.
  • Produced a report for the Development Plan & Infrastructure Panel, arguing for Southbourne to be treated fairly i.e., like everywhere else by the Local Plan Review with regards to how housing is allocated. Development Plan Implementation Panel (DPIP) does not meet in public, and I have put a motion to Full Council to ensure that this matter is addressed with the transparency it deserves.

HOUSING and COMMUNITIES

  • Attended the excellent and inspiring event hosted by local charities Children on the Edge and Sanctuary to mark World Refugee Day. As well as hearing from the charities we heard the first-hand stories of several refugees who had made their way to the UK from Afghanistan and Ukraine. It was awful hearing about the brutal incompetence of the Home Office and the self-harming policies that prevent refugees from working (meaning they are forced into poverty, cannot support themselves and find it harder to integrate). Despite their individual, and sometimes heart-breaking challenges, it was nevertheless uplifting to hear how strong they had been and how they are now trying to make decent lives for themselves.
  • Took part in the District Council's Member Induction Task & Finish Group. This group met to review the effectiveness of support offered to newly elected councillors. Much of my contribution was around the need to reduce the number of days required early on (which puts extra stress on those with jobs / caring responsibilities), to focus on what was most important and to give new councillors resources to find information at a later date.

ENVIRONMENT and WELLBEING

  • Joined a Net Zero Living webinar, hosted by polling company Ipsos and the Centre for Climate Change and Social Transformations. This webinar described the latest evidence on the effectiveness of different kinds of messaging and policy prioritisation with regards to building support for action against climate change and will help me and other Councillors advocate effectively for policies to make a real difference. In particular it was apparent that people are interested in ‘win-win’ solutions (e.g., that reduce carbon emissions and have another identifiable social or economic benefit) and that the process must be fair.

 

Judy Fowler

District Councillor for Midhurst Ward

Photo of Judy Fowler

TRANSPORT and INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Consulted over siting of 5G mast in Midhurst town

HOUSING and COMMUNITIES

  • Attended Planning meeting and Council training on traveller sites in District
  • Stewarded at Midhurst Town Council's Jubilee celebration at Cowdray Ruins.
  • In liaison with County Councillor produced article for local newspaper on lack of community engagement in prospective planning application for CDC Grange site.
  • Attended World Refugee Day meeting of Children on the Edge/ Sanctuary in Chichester.
  • As Chichester District Council (CDC) representative attended Chichester Festival Theatre (CFT)'s birthday staff presentation on the history of the theatre
  • Volunteered at Rother Valley Together activity club

ENVIRONMENT and WELLBEING

  • Visited Sustainability Centre at East Meon, Hanpshire
  • Liaised with Independent Councillor re future care and provision of St Anne's Hill

 

Kate O’Kelly

County Councillor (Midhurst division) and District Councillor (Harting ward)

TRANSPORT and INFRASTRUCTURE

  • Friends of Rother Valley Way – meeting to discuss approach to landowners on the section of this off-road cycle route between Petersfield and Nyewood
  • County Local Forum: a meeting for residents – nearly half the questions (including heartfelt testimony from many residents who have fallen and been injured) were about the poor state of pavements in the city but our rural towns were also mentioned – we discussed solutions such as stopping the very heavy lorries parking on the pavements – this needs leadership and all levels of government working together. This is not happening - the Tory administration at Chichester District Council are not partnering with the City Council and the Tory run WSCC are refusing to lead saying there are other more important calls on their capital budget.
  • Member visit to the Drayton depot – really good to see their new machines in action the Jet Patcher will save many hours of work – it can patch 2 defects in the carriageway in 12 minutes previously it would have taken 90 minutes. Saw the graveyard of traffic cones from the botched, significant amount of taxpayers’ money wasted on, Covid cycle schemes.
  • Discussion with traffic engineer from WSCC about the Stedham to Midhurst road widening scheme – need to explore all options as one landowner is holding this up and could jeopardise the whole scheme.

HOUSING and COMMUNITIES

  • A big highlight last month was the Jubilee weekend – being up on Harting Hill seeing the Beacon being lit was truly memorable with many residents on the hill.
  • Talked to the Director of Communities at the Council about the role of her team in supporting all the Ukrainian refugees and their host families. They are working really hard to support everyone and where necessary finding new host families.
  • Governance committee at WSCC – attempted to stop the Conservatives assault on democracy. They have now changed the constitution at WSCC so no new motions can be brought back to Council if they have been debated in the last 4 years – previously and for most councils this is 6 months. We have been advised that this practice has not been observed by any other County Council (even those with a similarly sized Tory majority. Lib Dems issued a press release to highlight this undemocratic Tory action – but what we need are more non-Tories on the County Council to first reverse and then respect local democracy
  • Stedham Parish council – gave details of household support fund for families who are struggling with the cost-of-living crisis
  • Meeting of the Youth Cabinet – the young people were able to put their agenda to the county councillors – good to hear their priorities as we work with them over the next year. Mental health and climate change were key areas.

ENVIRONMENT and WELLBEING

  • County Council seconded Lib Dem group’s amendment to the motion on Public Health funding - calling for extra funds for Stop Smoking services. Nationally, after significant reduction in smokers, the number quitting has paused and there are still 77,000 smokers in West Sussex. These services are invaluable - they are evidence based and really improve lives and wellbeing.
  • County Council - I asked a question about Electric Vehicle (EV) charging points and how they are going to be rolled out across the county. The contractors who are installing the EV chargers as part of the project have started putting in charge points in car parks across the county. I expressed concern because Chichester District Council (CDC) have not joined the partnership so none of the CDC owned car parks in the District are included in the roll out. It is hard to see how this critical infrastructure is going to catch up with the need as more people will be switching to electric over the next few years. Press release followed!
  • Health and Adult Social Care committee - Scrutinised the Shaw Contract which the County has with 12 care homes. Costs the County £23.5million a year - 5 of the 12 are rated as Requires Improvement (RI) – significant amount of taxpayers’ money is being spent on poor services.
  • Lib Dem County Councillor Group proposed future items for discussion - Self harm item to be extended to scrutinise Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) and ambulance response times to be reviewed, given current state of crisis!
  • County Council member briefing on climate change plans – good to hear their detailed and strategic approach BUT they are only concentrating on WSCC emissions which are 1% of the county emissions – we will be proposing that they set a target county wide. Disappointing that their view is so narrow.

 

Maureen Corfield

City Councillor for Chichester North

Transport and Infrastructure

    Analysed WSCC’s Transport Plan for comment. Found no provision for reducing speeding on urban roads, the tried and tested method for reducing accidents, pollutants, noise and improving active travel, willingness for pedestrians, cyclists, students, and children to walk and cycle on Chichester’s roads. Wrote open letter to WSCC Cabinet member for Transport, WSCC’s Task & Finish Group for Road Safety, and Chichester’s WSCC’s Councillors to highlight this omission in the Transport Plan Progressed the work to find and agree new sites for SIDs around Chichester North Made contact with The University of Chichester’s Estates Manager to raise awareness of the need to reinstate their missing two Speed Indicator Devices along College Lane. Administrated, co-ordinated, and attended Speed Watch sessions and recruited more volunteers

Housing and Communities

    Contributed to Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group Marshalled at (and enjoyed) Chichester City Council’s Jubilee Gala and attended various other celebratory community events over the four-day weekend Wrote an article for Roussillon Post Pursued monies for Speed Watch equipment from Chichester North Residents’ Associations Arranged for and conducted Friends of Oaklands Park’s inaugural meeting to set up this new association

ENVIRONMENT and WELLBEING

  • Critiqued WSCC’s Transport Plan for its lack of speed reduction measures, which, if implemented, would specifically impact emissions with measurable outcomes
  • Completed training for Chichester Tree Audit project run by Chichester University. And local Tree Wardens.
  • Began audit of trees on Broyle Road.
  • Attended on-line conference on Climate and biodiversity issues
  • Responded to local concerned with light pollution around the city

 

Richard Plowman

District Councillor for the Chichester North Ward

Transport and infrastructure

  • Scrutinised the just-issued latest Whitehouse Farm Phase 2 Outline Planning permission. The Southern Access Road is giving great concern.
  • Attended the East Broyle Residents Association AGM.
  • Major issues with the St Pauls Road, Norwich Road and Sherborne Road junction now not fit for purpose
  • Pushing hard for Pavement improvements at the Vision Delivery group and through the City Council

Housing and Communities

  • Had the monthly organisers meeting and Steering Group meeting for the Chichester Neighbourhood Plan. Started looking at policies.
  • Deputised for the Mayor at Chichester Big Band Jubilee tea party and concert and was compere for the Chichester City Band 125-year celebration
  • Working with the Planetarium on their new developments and linked them to Businees2Schools charity for equipment and furniture
  • Working with the Ukrainian refugees and attended a party for the 27 Ukrainian pupils, families, and supporters at Bishop Luffa School

Environment and Wellbeing

  • Took part in 7 different Platinum Jubilee Celebrations as Town Crier including leading a group of 4 Ukrainian families in the Gala Platinum Jubilee parade
  • Chaired a community meeting in Oakland Park and agreed constitution for Friends of Oakland Park with fellow Lib Dem Councillors, Maureen Corfield and Jonathan Brown

 

Sarah Quail

City Councillor for the Chichester West

Transport and Infrastructure

  • Chaired Planning and Conservation Committee where subjects discussed included Neighbourhood Plan engagement with the local population, access to health facilities, and Chichester city centre paving.
    • There was disbelief that WSCC is refusing to underwrite pavement repairs owing to lack of evidence of need! A working party will be established to take this issue forward.
    • There was also discussion on the Southern Gateway including Chichester District Council’s (CDC’s) plans for the Bus Station. I agreed to write to CDC and suggest that greater transparency and more public consultation were vital as this project moves forward.
  • Attended Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group meeting

Housing and Communities

  • As Chair of the Westgate Residents Association (WGRA), I have been waiting during June for CDC to publish Miller Vistry’s planning application for White House Farm Phase 2 and, most importantly, Miller Vistry’s proposals for the Southern Access Road (SAR).
    • The original application was in fact declared invalid by CDC and returned to Miller Vistry for more detail, and it was published finally on CDC’s website on 2 July 2022. Initial examination of the proposals indicates that little if anything has changed since Summer 2021. The SAR junction with Sherborne Road and Westgate is virtually the same and so the same objections: road safety, congestion, capacity, pollution, and rat running through our Chi West communities still apply.
    • The Lib Dems of Chi WEST are mobilising and will meet on 4 July with the Chair of the Parklands Residents Association to take this issue forward as we gather our resources to fight this scheme.

 

Tracie Bangert

District Councillor for the Southbourne Ward

HOUSING and COMMUNITIES

  • Work continues on the Affordable Housing Task and Finish Group at CDC, of which I am Chair. We had 25 questions from the members, which have been arranged into categories, all of which will be answered shortly. The officers are firmly against CDC setting up any housing providers itself; Lib Dem District Group Leader, Adrian Moss also attended one of these meetings, and effectively quizzed some of the Officers on their intentions.
  • Attended Development Plan Implementation Panel (DPIP), to support Lib Councillor, Jonathan Brown in his proposal for Southbourne Neighbourhood Plan (NP).
  • Attended Southbourne Parish Council (PC) meeting, where we discussed the progress of various projects that the PC is funding with the use of S106 funds; for example the refurbishment of the Pavilion at the rec. ground, the landscaping of land near Tesco Express, and bike racks at Southbourne Station.
  • Southbourne Parish Council celebrated the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee by holding a picnic in the rec. ground. I helped with the ‘dizzy football’ and had previously been involved in the organisation of the mosaic designed by Year 9 pupils at the Bourne School. I unveiled this in front of the teachers and pupils on the Monday after the picnic.
  • Attended Full Governor’s meeting at the Bourne School, where we happily celebrated the recent wedding of the Headteacher, Yvonne Watkins, to the Head of Business Studies at Chichester University, David Cooper.
  • Attended the Sussex Day Fete at St John’s in Southbourne, where I chatted to a number of residents about issues that concerned them.
  • Attended the World Refugee talk at the Revelation Church in Chichester, where we heard refugees speaking movingly of their flight from Afghanistan and Ukraine, and conditions in those countries now.
  • Met with Chris Cook of West Sussex Youth Clubs, with other Parish Councillors, to discuss setting one up in Southbourne. This will now lead on to a stakeholder meeting in July.
  • Attended Overview and Scrutiny (OSC), where we had DCI Nick Bowman answer questions from the Committee. The main concerns seemed to be the lack of visibility of local PCSOs.
  • Met with Jacky Pendleton, Chair of the West Sussex Civilian Military Partnership (CMP), and we went down to visit Thorney Island School. This was my second recent visit, and it was a pleasure to be taken around such an outstanding school (85% are Forces and the remainder come from off the Island) and the reason it works so well is that the military parents are so committed to, and involved with, the school.
  • Attended the Civilian Military Partnership (CMP) meeting in Chichester, where I was told that the work Lib County Councillor, Andrew Kerry-Bedell and I had done on the Community Bus has been taken to a 2-star General, who has commended us on our work. I also actioned training for members and senior officers on the Military Covenant, which hopefully will be arranged soon. Further, I discovered that the number of service personnel on Thorney will be increased as it has become the surface-to-air base in the UK
  • Met with Chichester’s Anti-social Behaviour Officer: Marshal Abbott to discuss his role in community policing.

ENVIRONMENT and WELLBEING

  • Attended a briefing at Selsey Town Hall by the Crustaceans Habitat and Sediment Movement (CHASM), which gave a history of fishing in the area and an outline of the challenges faced to the environment with pollution and runoff of chemicals from the land. Southampton, Brighton and Portsmouth Universities are involved in the initiative and are conducting research into the local habitat and working with local fishermen.
  • Met with Francis Monkman, ex keyboard player with the prog rock band Curved Air (and an impressive backing musician and writer), who is handling a bequest from a friend to plant trees in Southbourne. Sophie Hamnett, the tree expert from CDC, has marked the Lumley wildlife corridor to take these trees.
  • Met with the manager of Southbourne Surgery (Darren Nicholson) and took questions to him from local residents, on GP provision – with Lyn Hicks of Southbourne PC. As a result, he has invited us to sit in during the morning reception to see how they triage calls.
  • Attended West Sussex County Council Health and Social Care committee (HASC), where there was a discussion of the inadequacy of a 30-year care contract that West Sussex had signed some 15 years ago. With their expertise, Dr Kate O’Kelly and Dr James Walsh effectively drilled into this waste of public money (beds not being used due to being unsuitable, despite shortages).
  • While attending the Civilian Military Partnership (CMP) meeting in Chichester, I was delighted to be advised that the base at Thorney Island is embracing solar panels, which will hopefully produce 30% of the Island’s electricity

 

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