Monday, 28 May 2007

Online poll about Bin Collections

I have been talking for weeks to officers about getting an on-line poll or petition set up on the Council web site. It turns out that this would be very expensive, take up lots of officer time .... etc, etc, etc.

So guess what. I thought I would do it myself. It took 10 minutes and cost me nothing. Now this is what electing Conservative Councillors is all about.
Cutting through all the unnecessary bureaucracy and listening to, and delivering what is best for, our residents.

See the poll at the top right of this blog. I am going to make it a permanent feature. There will always be something valuable to get your opinion on. Also, bear in mind this is my first poll! So it may not be perfect, but it is a start. You will always get criticism - often by people that use a list of excuses for not doing things themselves.

Thursday, 24 May 2007

Charlotte's new car

My Charlotte has just got a nice new toy, just in time for the summer. Drive carefully, always wear your seat belt and don't speed!! And can I have a go some time? The only trouble, is that now Charlotte has got this, her 4 sisters and mother will also now be looking for new cars! Before Charlotte had wheel spinned out the drive I heard those words that strike terror to hearts of all fathers ... "I want one!"

Tuesday, 22 May 2007

Early Morning Raids today.

Early morning raids (6am) have been carried out in Farnborough as part of an operation to target perpetrators of anti-social behaviour and drug abuse.
Around 80 police officers, including officers from Rushmoor’s Safer Neighbourhood Teams, CID, the Force Support Unit and the force’s dog unit, executed a number of warrants simultaneously at addresses in Aldwick Close, Farnborough, Caswell Close, Farnborough and Bracklesham Close, Farnborough.
Officers have found evidence of Class A drug activity.
The warrants were part of an operation to target perpetrators of anti-social behaviour and drug abuse. Inspector Paul Pressley said: “Following the early morning raids, officers have seized numerous items which should enable us to apply for several Crack House Closure Orders. This evidence will be presented to a Magistrate who will decide whether or not they will grant a Crack House Closure Order under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003. These orders mean that no-one can use the properties for three months.
“Drug abuse will not be tolerated in our community and we will deal robustly with those who commit these sorts of offences.
“This sort of behaviour can seriously affect the quality of life for many members of our community and can be detrimental to the lives of the other residents in the area. We will continue to work to make improvements to the community.
“I would urge anyone who witnesses any kind of drug related anti-social behaviour in their communities to contact the police.”
Local beat officers are visiting residents in the affected area to explain why the warrants were executed and offer community reassurance and crime prevention advice.
An 18-year-old man from Farnborough has been arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class C drugs. An 18-year-old man from Farnborough has been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of Class C drugs and money laundering.
A third person, wanted by Surrey Police, has also been arrested. Anyone with any information should contact Hampshire Constabulary on 0845 045 45 45 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Planning Application for Cinema is in!!

Well its all happening this week. We have just recieved the planning application for the new Farnborough Cinema.
So this all being well should be determined (voted on) by the Planning Committee by July.

All I can say is "it's about time"

Monday, 21 May 2007

Unwelcome to Farnborough

Following an email from a concerned resident, I have complained about the unwelcoming sign greeting visitors to Farnborough as they come off the Blackwater Valley Relief Road. This ugly sign slapped onto a pole that was obviously one of a pair holding another sign that has been removed. I think the people that put this together should be fined!!!

Demolition begins in Farnborough

Erith Demolition get ready to start, witnessed by two of your ward councillors, Brian Parker and myself with KPI's Simon Rutter (Blue hat) and Erith's Brian Grover.

Fellow ward councillor Brian Parker, sums up the mood of all of us, as they start to tear down the first unit.

The demolition team are just clearing room for portacabins over the next few days, but then the main work will be started and will not finish until the ground is cleared for the main project.

Sunday, 20 May 2007

Raising money for Naomi House, Southampton

Had a great weekend in Southampton helping to raise money for a childrens hospice in Southampton. The Hamilton's were the guests of honour, and were very entertaining and the most delightful company. Everyone warmed to them, and they were a great help to the charity and both very generous with their time and money.

I sneaked a photo with a georgeous guest who had played a star role in Casino Royale, the recent Bond film. Miss Aston Martin.

The evening, at the De Vere Hotel raised thousands of pounds for a very worthwhile charity which cares for the families of those devastated by the terminal illness of their children. It really helps put all my own little problems into perspective.

Wednesday, 16 May 2007

My quiet mother in law

Today my dear sweet mother in law,

was chauffeured to a Civic Hall,

Where of her, great and good was spoke,

before they turned her into smoke.

Thru the roof she quietly rose,

into the clouds she was disposed.

So, its no to Bristol as flying goes.

I don't want mother up my nose.

Monday, 14 May 2007

My Flying Club - Basingstoke

BBC News 24 - Councils attack migration figures

Go to or read my copy below.

The number of migrants entering the UK has been underestimated, say local authority leaders who fear it will mean public services will be hit.
In a letter to the Treasury seen by the BBC, four leaders say a new method to calculate migrant numbers is flawed and shows "perverse results".
The Office for National Statistics figures determine funding for councils.
Immigration Minister Liam Byrne said the government would try to keep a "closer track" of the situation.
'Not representative'
The council leaders of Slough, Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea, and Hammersmith and Fulham say the "improved" method of calculating immigration, introduced last month, does not "remotely" represent the true picture on the ground.
The new figures suggest the London area is losing some 60,000 migrants to other parts of the country every month, they said
This loss of funding will put a considerable strain on our ability to provide the excellent services we pride ourselves on
Cllr Merrick Cockell,Leader of Kensington and Chelsea
The leaders have written a joint letter to Treasury Minister John Healey, urging him not to use this information to calculate council funding.
Cllr Stephen Greenhalgh of Hammersmith and Fulham said his Borough had seen a 550% increase in national insurance registrations by eastern European nationals.
Sir Simon Milton, leader of Westminster City Council, said he had "anecdotal evidence to suggest that over 2,000 migrants are coming through Victoria coach station on a weekly basis".
"We are so concerned about the use of these figures for vital council funding that we are lobbying the Treasury in addition to commissioning our own surveys," he said.
Richard Stokes, leader of Slough Borough Council, said poor migration statistics were already leading to severe underfunding.
"Estimates have failed to keep pace with what is happening on the ground and public services are suffering as a result," he said.
"The migrants that come to Slough are hard working and bring great benefit to the local economy but the council remains severely underfunded because of these poor statistics."
Merrick Cockell, leader of Kensington and Chelsea Council, said he believed his community would suffer as a result of what he called the flawed statistics.
"This loss of funding will put a considerable strain on our ability to provide the excellent services we pride ourselves on," he said.
'Wider impact'
Two thirds of local authorities across the country contacted by the BBC said they did not have faith in the official number of migrants in their area.
More than half said they would consider doing their own count to establish a more accurate picture.
Mr Byrne told BBC Breakfast that the system for calculating the number of migrants arriving in the UK had been put in place by the ONS, which is independent of government.
He said a new group would be meeting for the first time in June to help keep a "closer track" of the issue.
Mr Byrne added: "We have to accept that migration can have a wider impact on British public life.
"That is why we need much tougher checks on people abroad before they come here in the first place.
"But it also means that we need to be upfront about listening to local authorities and local parts of NHS about whether there are impacts, so we can take that into account when we are making the decision about who we let in and who we don't."
A Department for Communities and Local Government spokesman said: "Local government in England has received 10 successive years of above-inflation grant increases."
He added: "Allocations are based on official statistics produced by the ONS. These are the best available.
"We will take advice from the ONS in preparation of the 2008-2011 spending settlement. Nothing can change before then and we will consult widely and listen to competing views of different councils, as we always do."

Sunday, 13 May 2007

Happy Birthday Dad

Celebrated Dad's birthday at home with mum and my sisters today. I cannot believe he has been gone 6 years, but we still get together every year on his birthday, and laugh and smile about all his funny ways. We had a cake with a candle on, and it went out as we sang happy birthday - we think he popped back just to blow it out and say hello. He was a very happy, optomistic man, that had lots of reasons not to be. My one regret is that I did not tell him enough when he was alive how much I loved him. I so wish he was still around, I loved having him work in the office with me. He was also a lot more forgiving than me and would soften my views about people. He would have been a far better councillor than me, but he never had the opportunity which is a shame, although I grew up always seeing him helping other people - he always stopped to help people that had broken down, etc. Nothing was too inconvenient or any trouble for him. A lovely man.

Happy birthday Dad.

Saturday, 12 May 2007

Friday, 11 May 2007

Cycle Signs - a note from our beat officer Lee

TAG weekend flying appeal

Government may not decide TAG appeal until October

The Government have confirmed that a decision on the planning appeal by TAG to increase the number of flights at Farnborough Airport over weekends and Bank Holidays may not be made for over five months.

In a recent letter from the Planning Inspectorate, the government agency responsible for appeals, it stated that the Inspector was preparing his report and recommendation for submission to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government for her consideration. The letter to Rushmoor Borough Council went on to confirm that the Secretary of State will issue her decision on or before 31 October 2007.

TAG lodged its appeal against Rushmoor Council’s decision last June to refuse permission to increase the number of permitted movements at the Airport at weekends and on Bank Holidays from 2,500 a year to 5,000 a year.

The public inquiry was opened in January by Inspector Ken Smith who sat for a week listening to the Council’s case, and then adjourned the hearing until April, when it sat for a further week to hear the appellant’s case. Local residents also had the opportunity to put their views to the Inspector.

The Planning Inspectorate will send a copy of the appeal decision to those who ask for one in writing to Room 4/04 Kite Wing, Temple Quay House, 2 The Square, Temple Quay, Bristol, BS1 6PN quoting the reference APP/P1750/A/06/2024640/NWF or by sending an email to

Monday, 7 May 2007

God bless housewives - a note sent from my wife

A man came home from work and found his three children outside, still In their pajamas, playing in the mud, with empty food boxes and wrappers strewn all around the front garden.
The door of his wife's car was open, as was the front door to the house and there was no sign of the dog. Proceeding into the entry, he found an even bigger mess. A lamp had been knocked over, and the throw rug was wadded against one wall.

In the front room the TV was loudly blaring a cartoon channel, and the family room was strewn with toys and various items of clothing.

In the kitchen, dishes filled the sink, breakfast food was spilled on the counter, the fridge door was open wide, dog food was spilled on the floor, a broken glass lay under the table, and a small pile of sand was spread by the back door.
He quickly headed up the stairs, stepping over toys and more piles of clothes, looking for his wife. He was worried she might be ill, or that something serious had happened.

He was met with a small trickle of water as it made its way out the bathroom door.

As he peered inside he found wet towels, scummy soap and more toys strewn over the floor. Miles of toilet paper lay in a heap and toothpaste had been smeared over the mirror and walls.

As he rushed to the bedroom, he found his wife still curled up in the bed in her pajamas, reading a novel. She looked up at him, smiled, and asked how his day went. He looked at her bewildered and asked, "What happened here today?"
She again smiled and answered, "You know every day when you come home from work and you ask me what in the world I do all day?" "Yes," was his incredulous reply.

She answered, "Well, today I didn't do it."

Friday, 4 May 2007

More Good News ..... and thoughts on PM

It was great to hear today that two of my old friends have won seats for the first time. Simon Foale in St Michael's Ward in Surrey Heath and Tony Sharpe in Wellingborough. Both were standing as Conservative councillors for the first time. They will both make fantastic local Councillors, and I know will work hard for their residents.

Well done boys - you are now part of the largest political party in local Government with over 5000 Councillors in control of 162 of the 312 Councils in England (almost 100 have no overall political control). And the closest party behind us are the Lib Dems now, with just over 2000 Councillors in control of 23 Councils. Labour control just 33 Councils now with just over 1800 Councillors.
I personally think its a disgrace that Brown will be annointed Prime Minister. We, the people should decide. I cannot see why we cannot have a direct election for Prime Minister, dare I say as the French are having!! They get to choose their political leader - we however, cannot be trusted. I think it is now the time we did not trust the election of Prime Minister, just to Parliament. I want a ballot paper that I can put my cross on for Britains Political leader. What's good for the French this weekend is good for us.

EiIeen Sanders 1934 - 2007

At 2pm today unoticed by the world, a life that gave life and loved slipped quietly away. She was a quiet unassuming woman, who led a quiet unassuming life. There was no fanfare at her birth, and no solemn announcement at her passing, she has joined the legions of the silent departed, ultimately forgotten to mankind, but known intimately to God. She lives on right now in the lives of those she has begotten, loved and cared for. She was loved much, and will be missed more. She has joined a quiet unassuming man, that no doubt has found a quiet clean and tidy place beyond mortal reach quietly enjoying the company of her never forgotten favorite dance partner.

Conservatives takes two seats from Lib Dems in Rushmoor

Myself and Farnborough MP Gerald Howarth at Empress Campaign HQ (moi maison) after checking the canvass returns...

Following a hard fought campaign in Rushmoor this year, we took two more seats from the Liberal Democrats in Farnborough this year - Cove and Southwood, and Westheath Wards.

Here in Empress Ward we polled the highest votes in the Borough again. Our candidate Brian Parker was elected and will make a great member of the Empress Team working for our residents. The results were as follows:

Brian PARKER (Conservative) 1,150
Toby SMITH (Lib Dem) 480
Christopher WRIGHT (Labour) 169

Congratulations Cllr. PARKER.

And a big thank you to the residents of Empress for voting Conservative this year again.

Brian Parker with fellow candidate Toby Smith at "the count" watching the officials counting the ballot papers. You can always spot the candidates at the count - they are the ones with the worried faces!!
I would also like to thank the other candidates for the dignified way they fought the campaign. I have said before, that I admire anyone that allows themselves to be put forward for public office.

Thursday, 3 May 2007

Wednesday, 2 May 2007

Canvassing in Grange Ward

Out helping the Grange Team. Good luck!!

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Don't go abroad.

With weather like this, who would want to go abroad?
A warm Britain is unbeatable.
Although I dread to think what the traffic will be like this Bank Holiday Weekend.

Farnborough Burglary suspects

Officers have released e-fit pictures of two men they want to speak to in connection with two distraction burglaries in Farnborough.
At around 3.30pm on Saturday, April 21, a 78-year-old woman was at home at an address in Jenkins Place, Peabody Road, Farnborough, when a man rang the buzzer to her flat and claimed he had a parcel for her. The victim let him in and a man and woman entered the house.
Once inside they began to talk to the victim about collecting money for charity. They said that they had been raising money and were giving it away and the man asked the victim if she had any change for a £10 note. She got up to find her purse. As she looked for her purse, it was thrown at her by the man.
The man and woman then left. The victim then noticed that £200 in cash was missing from her purse. At around 3.30pm on Thursday, April 19, a 77-year-old woman was at home at an address in Matthews Close, Farnborough, when a man knocked at her door and claimed to be from the water board. He told her he needed to come inside to check her taps. She let him in and he asked to go to the kitchen while he left the front door open.
When the man had left the victim noticed that money and credit cards were missing. PC Nick Horsey said: “These incidents are examples of this sort of cowardly and sickening crime where offenders deliberately target vulnerable and elderly people.
“I would urge anyone who recognises the men in the e-fits to contact the police at the earliest opportunity.” Officers are offering the following Safer Homes advice to avoid becoming a victim of this sort of crime: Burglars can fool you into thinking they are genuine callers. Don't be the one who invites them in. If in doubt, keep them out!
• Stop – are you expecting anyone to call on you? Do you know the person at the door? Don’t be misled by what appear to be genuine reasons for calling on you.
• Check – A genuine caller will carry identification and will be happy to wait outside while you check it. Remember to source your own number for the company they are claiming to be from, don’t accept a number from the caller.
• Chain – fit a door chain or spy hole so that you can speak to callers or check who they are without opening the door fully.
If you turn anyone away from your home because they could not provide you with a genuine reason for being there, or you are suspicious of callers in your area, contact the police.
You can contact your local police station on 0845 045 45 45. In an emergency always dial 999. Anyone with any information regarding these incidents should contact PC Horsey or PC Dennis in the Priority Crime Unit at Aldershot police station on 0845 045 45 45 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Town Centre Schedule

I have spoken again to Simon Rutter from KPI the developer, who I am meeting on site next week to discuss the progress of the Town now that the agreements have all been signed between Rushmoor and KPI. The following is a preliminary scedule of the works, all of which will take about 2 1/2 years to complete. The demolition contract has been given to Erith, who are currently disconnecting electric etc before commencing demolition in the next two weeks. The first part to be demolished will be 59-33 Queensmead, and the demolition company Erith will then continue north demolishing and making the area clear for rebuilding finishing in mid September.

Phase 1: Building a new service road access and new entrance for Kingsmead. Westco have been assigned this contract and will start in about two weeks. The work will last for 3 months and will involve the closure of the Kingsmead West entrance for 2 weeks. (Please note that the other 3 entrances will remain open).

Phase 2: Replacement housing for Firgrove Court. This will start mid June and last about a year. The tenders are due back in 2 weeks.

Phase 3: Offices and shops between 61 Queensmead and Kingsmead. This will start by the end of the year, and will take about a year to complete.

Phase 4: Supermarket. residential and hotel. The largest part of the scheme. This will start Jan/Feb 2008. The retail element will be "open for business" by September 2008 although the phase will take about 85 weeks to complete fully.

Phase 5: Debenham wrap around. This will start about March 2008 and will take about 18 months to complete.