Saturday, 31 March 2007

Spring cleaning

Local councillors and colleagues from the Focus Team got busy today on various Spring Cleans. Here they are at Abbotswood, where one set of bushes produced half a truckload of rubbish, and a variety of sporting goods. The score was two footballs, two golf balls, a snooker ball and a golf umbrella.

Mandy Sainsbury gets into the thick of it (or was it thicket?)

Paul Hulbert and Margaret Bracey load rubbish onto the truck

Lots of other volunteers were out too, particularly church groups. There was a cleanup at Templar Way, and the cub scouts were hard at work gardening at St Nicks. Well done everyone!

Thursday, 29 March 2007

Help tidy up Abbotswood this Saturday morning (31st March)

There's a lot going on at Abbotswood on Saturday morning this week. St Nicks Church is having its bi-annual gardening day from 9 to 12, and the Focus Team is joining them for spring cleaning from 10 o'clock.
(They're not getting up late - they're cleaning up somewhere else first!)

Please come and join in.

Friday, 23 March 2007

Network Rail - Robin Way, Goldcrest Road

Residents near the cutting have received letters from Network Rail explaining that they're removing vegetation because:

Vegetation can create a host of safety problems. It is well documented that during the autumn months thousands of tonnes of leaves fall onto the railway line. Passing trains compress these leaves to form a slippery black substance on the rails which can acuse the train wheels to slip in a similar way to black ice on the roads.

Furthermore the build up of leaf material on the rails interferes with the signalling system and can block drains and culverts leading to flooding.

Additionally there is a risk of dead leaves falling across the tracks and overgrown vegetation obscuring the driver's view of signals, level crossings or those working on the track.

The work is going on at the moment.

How to apply for a Diamondtravel Card

We've been asked how to apply for the Diamondtravel Card that we talked about in this earlier article.

All the details are on the South Glos Council website - click here for the Concessionary Travel page.

You can download the form from there as well.

Thursday, 15 March 2007

Steve Webb short video

Steve's got a (very) short video about the members' debate on the Lib Dem manifesto.

Click here to watch the video (opens in a new window)

Then click here to take part in the manifesto debate.

Monday, 12 March 2007

Community digs in to hide mast equipment

Local residents and councillors have rolled up their sleeves to hide some of the equipment next to the large mobile phone mast on Rodford Way, Yate.

After consulting local people, Dodington Parish Council managed to persuade mobile operator O2 to pay for some screen planting. “We thought it would be a good idea to do this as a community project,” said Cllr Paul Hulbert. “The planting will mark all the hard work put in by the residents group and the Parish Council”.

O2 will also be repainting the mast light grey, the colour chosen by the majority of the local people responding to the Parish Council survey.

The trees and bushes were planted in a single morning. “We were helped by Thomas, aged seven, who worked harder than everyone else!” said Mandy Sainsbury. “So much so that we’ve decided to call it Thomas’s Garden”

Pictured are residents Karen Bateman and Mandy Sainsbury, Cllrs Alan Lawrance, Paul Hulbert and Mike Robbins, and budding "Capability Brown" Thomas.

Fewer lorries for rail work at Westerleigh Rd

The latest estimate from Network Rail is that they will need to bring in 300 lorry loads of material, rather than a thousand as we were originally told. That must be good news.

They were talking about three lorries in and out per hour, but probably a bit less now because the deliveries will be over a period of about four weeks. That means an average of about 15 lorries a day.

We'll keep you posted about any further developments.

Sunday, 11 March 2007

Goodbye trees, hello traffic

Here are the results of Network Rail's first few days work at Westerleigh Road. We knew it was going to be pretty drastic, but the reality is always worse than you imagine. That wooded embankment is part-cleared. The pond is full of cut wood - remember how concerned they were about the drainage? Let's hope it doesn't rain until they've cleared it. And they've damaged their fence - you know, the one that's essential to keep the kids off the line.

By the way, we asked them how many trees they're removing. Their answer - they don't know, because they didn't do that sort of survey. They can only tell us what species there are (sorry, were). Mainly hawthorn, plus some ash and apple and one elder.

Meanwhile, the traffic problems have started. There were a few problems while they were building the access road, when this photo was taken, but no doubt there will be more due to all the lorries. The residents of Rodborough are currently concerned about lorries that have been driving into their street and then reversing across the main road, plus contractors' vehicles parking in Rodborough. We've approached Network Rail about the problems - let's see how effective they are.

Friday, 2 March 2007

(Some) trees saved!

Network Rail have confirmed that they won't now cut down the trees on the tops of the cutting behind Robin Way and Goldcrest. This means that there will still be some visual screening between the Robin Way houses and the tall mobile phone masts on the other side of the cutting.

But they will still be removing trees from the cutting. At the Sodbury end they have to go right to the top to avoid the sort of landslip that happened behind Blanchards occurring again.

The landslip behind Blanchards went
right to the top of the cutting

Culverhill Rd closed daytime 10 and 11 March

Culverhill Road (Chipping Sodbury) will be closed between Love Lane and Horseshoe Lane from 8.00 am to 4.30 pm on Sat 10 March and Sun 11 March. This is to install a pedestrian island in Culverhill Road.

The alternative route is Bowling Road, Dodington Road, Claypit Hill, Wapley Road (B4465), Shorthill Road, Westerleigh Road, Station Road (B4060), Bowling Hill, Culverhill Road and vice versa (a very long way round, but there's no real alternative)