Council cuts litter picking and bin emptying without any notification – We must not let this continue

The Council cut litter picking and bin emptying a few weeks ago on Fridays and Saturday mornings in Framwellgate Moor and other areas.

The results are clear to see already with overflowing bins and a lot more rubbish lying around. We fought bitterly to get an improved service in the area, particularly in Framwellgate Moor which has such enormous footfall, and we cannot allow the Council to go back to the bad old days.

The current situation means that from early on Friday before the lunchtime rush, until Monday morning no litter picking is taking place, no bins emptied. It’s completely unacceptable and was done without even consulting with Councillors.

After raising this last week with the Head of Service I have asked for urgent talks to get the service reinstated. I have already had numerous complaints.

What is even more galling is that just a few weeks back the Council to great fanfare announced a major “Spruce Up” of the area which we fully supported, getting a bigger area cleaned up than originally planned.

Some of the gulleys and channels in Framwellgate Moor are already blocked up again due to the cut backs and some are now wondering if the Spruce Up was an excuse to make things look good before secretly slashing the service.

Needless to say, along with the takeaway issue, we will not be letting this drop.

New School Sports Hall well underway

The construction of the new sports hall at Framwellgate School Durham is well underway. The old sports hall was in dire need of replacement after years of under investment by successive governments and the Labour-run council in to school buildings.

The school secured a £2m grant for the work and the school is looking to open the facilities to the local community once the site is completed. Your local Lib Dme councillors are working with the school on this and other projects.


Wet feet, wet pram – no big deal for me but perhaps for others it might be

Around there area there are a number of places where walking on the pavement isn’t always that easy – especially with a pram. I imagine in a wheelchair or without sturdy boots you’d struggle to. Here’s an example:

This is near Darcy’s garage on Old Pit Terrace. I’ve reported it a number of times but the Council does not see this kind of thing as a priority.

Of course there are more pressing problems for the Council but I still think it should be fixed.

Getting your feet wet is far safer than pushing a pram into the road, but not having to do either would be better.

If you know of anywhere which is the same or worse let us know.


Can you spare a few quid to help Jade Gadd and her family

Jade lives in Newton Hall with her parents and has a genetic condition which causes her joints to spontaneously dislocate at any time.

They need alterations to their house so she has proper access to it.

We all see adverts and news stories asking for help for people across the UK or even overseas. On this occasion we can actually help someone who lives just round the corner.

The Council has so far agreed to fund part of the works through funding provided via the government, however the overall cost is far higher than the maximum grant available. I am currently pushing for further help and to get things moving. However we need to do more.

There’s more information on the funding page about the conditions Jade is living in and the work needed. The have so far raised over £8000 but need to get closer to £30000!

Link to fundraising page:


Flytipping – cracking down across our area – Can you help?

Do you walk around our area a lot? Please help us spot flytipping and rubbish so we can get it cleared up.

On a  walkabout this week from Pity Me to Framwellgate Moor I found a fair bit of stuff dumped off the old Wagonway between Pity Me and Framwellgate Moor.

This has been reported and we expect the Council will sort it out fairly quickly.

Any potholes out there? Help us get them fixed

In the last week we have requested action at the Arnison Centre roundabout, on Carr House Drive, Bek Road and Rothbury Road in Newton Hall all for pothole repairs, and on Pity Me Front Street where the road is cracking up.

Of course we don’t think these are as bad as some we saw in another area of the County last week. See picture below of some pretty deep holes filled with rainwater. Needless to say the area has Labour councillors!

We think we are pretty proactive in chasing up road and footpath defects, so if you spot anything like this in our area we would be surprised, but please do let us know.

We think the Council needs to invest far more local funding into road and footpath repairs. It is one of the top complaints we get and as Lib Dem councillors we will continue to push for action.

Problem households causing major rubbish and vermin headache

There are a small number of problem households in the area causing real concern to residents.

As this picture shows it is pretty serious. One such property in Pity Me has been an issue for many months, with three residents taken to court and issued fines, yet the problem continues.

The Council is working hard to address problems at this and other properties following repeated requests from local residents and your Lib Dem councillors. This kind of behaviour cannot and will not be tolerated and we are chasing up the Council regularly where an issue is not dealt with.

If you are aware of any properties where there are similar problems please let us know asap. We need to make sure they are dealt with to avoid vermin issues and cost to the council of clearing up wind blown rubbish. Its also unacceptable to us to have any part of the area looking a mess like this.

Another Lib Dem success as Canterbury Road Bus Shelter installed next to Finchale Primary School

A new bus shelter has been installed outside Finchale Primary School in Newton Hall thanks to your local  Lib Dems.

We had to get agreement to use part of the land at the front of the school and also had to address various concerns of local residents about anti-social behaviour, but thankfully our perseverance has paid off.

The request for this work had originally come from local residents when we carried out our survey of residents last year. We hand delivered over 6200 leaflets across the area and got hundreds of responses. A number of people raised concerns about the lack of a bus stop at this location.

Concerns included residents getting wet when waiting for buses, but also the lack of space for people walking past when others were waiting for the bus, especially at school drop off times when it was dangerous with reports of people having to step into the road.

This is the fourth new or replacement bus shelter your Lib Dem councillors have secured in Newton Hall in the last year or so following the work carried out on Rothbury Road and Bek Road.

If there is another location where residents feel there are enough people using a bus stop to warrant a new shelter or if there are access problems to one, please let us know and we will do our best to sort it out.


Canterbury Road / Bek Road – new road surface failure – Lib Dem requests for action continue

We have now had to ask three times for the road and pavements to be swept following last years resurfacing by the Council’s contractor. Yet, still we have problems. The pavements especially on the Bek Road stretch are in a dreadful state, just a week or so after they were brushed.

The surface material has failed and the council are monitoring the situation. It is likely the contractor will have to come back on site and redo the work when winter is over, and if we don;t see such action we will of course be chasing up the council. At least one motorist has had to get a new windscreen as a result of the flying gravel from the surface, and in places the road is now rutting.