The Archive: 2008
|TC Runners and Riders
30 December 2008
We bring you an outline of the four candidates standing for the Fairhaven seat on the Saint Anne's on the Sea Town Council. Who are they? What is their
form?, and which should you vote for on 22 January if you live in the St Anne's part of Fairhaven......
|UK - Time for Change?
30 December 2008
One of our occasional articles of wider significance than Fylde. With the New Year in mind, we look at the impact of what was almost global meltdown in the
financial world, and we consider what the future holds for our society.....
|Pontins Redevelopment 23
Northern Trust unveil a plan to demolish Pontins Holiday Centre and replace it with houses. But is it a real plan? We went along to find out more for our
|Town Council Object to
Queensway Plans 10 December 2008
The Saint Anne's Town Council planning group voted 4 -0 with one abstention to object to Kensington's plans for Queensway. We bring you
a report of the meeting and the voting.....
|Town Council Vacancy 7 December 2008
The Saint Anne's Town Council has a vacancy for a new Councillor in the Fairhaven Ward. Candidates are welcome to apply, no previous experience needed, but voters might not
know an election is going to happen......
Growing Pains 6 December 2008
Blackpool objects to Preston's elevated status in the Central Lancashire plan, and to the Growth Point's massive Tithebarn development that will suck the financial lifeblood
out of Blackpool and the fylde. Fylde says it's going along with Blackpool for the moment, but it isn't too sure......
Refund Due? 5 December 2008
events at the Ratepayers 'Christmas Do' we wonder about the prospect of getting a Council Tax refund......
|Wesham Stirs 3 December 2008
with Wesham Town Council calls a public meeting to gauge public opinion about a monster development planned for the edge of Wesham. In the quite countryside of Fylde something
CPA - Interim Results 24 November 2008
Having 'bought' the CPA inspection result using all our money, the Commissar is likely to move up in the performance league
table. But we say the skids are under him and we don't think he can last until the final results are declared......
|Snippets - Nov 08 23 November
Growth Point Scheme gets moving, Swimming uncertainty, Housing need, Hostel talks breakdown, Parking charges not to be lowered for Christmas, More FBC Constitution
changes, St Annes Parish Council vacancy, Queensway objections and more.......
of Emergency 23 November 2008
Fylde's finances are so bad they declare the equivalent of a financial State of Emergency. How did that get explained away at the
Cabinet Meeting that saw Fylde's worst ever financial position reported, and how is it going to be put right?.......
MTFS UPDATE 2008 17 November 2008
Fylde's Finance Chief prepares the Big Red Panic Button for the Commissar. Disaster looms large. The Town Hall Project is to be
shelved, the pool sites are to be sold off, spending and recruitment are frozen, emergency powers to be given to individual councillors, and there is talk of redundancy to save
money. The coffers are running on empty.........
|CPA Inspection Due 1 November 2008
External inspectors will spend 10th to 14th November looking at what Fylde Cabinet does and what people think of it. We explain the background, what's involved, and we provide
contact emails for you tell the inspectors what you think......
|Queensway Quandaries 30
Kensington's planning application goes live with a lot of changes - and the Commissar is party to some 'agreements' that will change things even more, including
roads that will probably not be built for years, reductions in community benefits if the cost of the roads goes up, and even further reductions in the number of affordable
Our next MP? 29 October 2008
We take a light hearted look at the eight runners and riders that will be reduced to a final four next week, and suggest the odds we
would offer if we were operating a book on the result......
|Bus Pass Update 28 October 2008
The Commissar is crying Wolf again this year. We look at the overall figures and examine the background that produced them. We also have a look at how the scheme is working in
practice, and wonder if Fylde might be losing out by joining the 'Lancashire Pot' scheme.....
|QED Launched 14 September 2008
Queensway Environmental Defenders is a new group set up to defend Queensway from the threat of inappropriate development. They are holding their launch night on 27 Septpember.
We look at what's going on, and what are they about........
|Snippets August 2008 25 August
A Pandora's Box of news and views. Streetscene gets a new depot, Wesham is threatened with massive development, the Vogue nightclub is set to reignite anger in St
Annes. They'll have to keep the flames well clear of Wyre's new gas plant, and the trouble Wyre's developments in Thornton will cause on roads in Fylde. We also look at some
reader views you sent to us; the report that says we should all move south; and the troubles besetting the Les Dawson statue........
|Hey Houses 25 August 2008
New Fylde Housing has
run into serious financial trouble on its Heyhouses estate refurbishment programme and they want the Commissar to help out with some cash. They were going to sell some land to
a builder but that looks to have fallen through. So now they need a lump of public funding. Will they get it? Well, it is the Commissar's own ward........
|Interim Housing Policy 11 August
Fylde approves its Interim Housing Policy that provides targets for the mix of affordable housing, market value housing and intermediate housing that must be built on
any site that gets planning permission. But will the developers bite, and will it 'rebalance' our population as intended......
|What's Bugging You? 5 August 2008
Seven of Fylde Council's officers are confirmed with powers to listen to your phone calls and read your emails. Big Brother (the real one) has arrived. Perhaps they will
only use these powers for crime detection - but should they have them at all? And shouldn't crime detection be the job of the police?......
|'Masterplan' Considered 4
Councillors and the public get to hear the consultant's presentation of their new 'masterplan'. We bring our readers the story of the meeting. Learn all about 'Enabling
development' like hotels and housing on the outer promenade to fund the development if it goes ahead at all.......
|What Masterplan? 29 July 2008
take a first, but in-depth, peek at the much heralded SeaFront Masterplan that could put some new leisure uses and a hotel on the seaward side of St Anne's Prom. How does the
pool fit in?, and why does it keep referring to residential use?.......
|And There's More 25 July 2008
Cllr Mrs Buckley complains to counterbalance about misrepresentation. We delve deeper to dig for the truth, but find mostly confusion. We also discover Monday's Council meeting
may be told it cannot decide a matter that has been referred to it, but must pass it back to the Cabinet for them to decide. If this happens it is the final nail in the coffin
|Asset Mis-Selling? 22 July 2008
The Politburo is advised to sell land at Heeley Road worth around £500,000 for a pittance, but opts to sell it at "Full Market Value" - a valuation which itself has inbuilt
price-depressing features. Then the Commissar adds insult to injury by giving the buyer a grant equal to the cost of the land. "Freebies R Us in Fylde". Read all about
Save St Annes- Results Published 16 May 2008
The results of the Save St Annes Public Meeting are published, and they make uncomfortable reading for the Town Hall.
The pool closure plans are unpopular, but twice as many people are dissatisfied with the way the Council operates. 99% of respondents say Fylde Borough Council should take more
notice of its electorate.....
Burying the Rubbish 12 May
To cover up the SreetScene debacle, Fylde implements its planned restructure of senior management. We show how these events are connected and give the background to
StreetScene's magnificent £709,000 loss before it is buried forever.....
Management Shakeout 1 May 2008
Embattled Fylde Council plans a shake-up and shake-out of senior management. We break news of the new structure that is expected to
be reported to the Cabinet on 7th May. We speculate about why it is being done now, and analyse some of the implications of the proposed changes.....
Mayday MayDay Mayday 26
The Parish Poll where St Annes residents should exercise their vote to save the swimming pool will be held on 1 May between 4pm and 9pm. We explain some of the
arrangements and look at the background. We also remember a big corruption case that rocked Local Government when bribes were exchanged for planning permissions a few years
|Save St Annes 26 April 2008
on the Public Meeting held by St Anne's on the Sea Town Council and Fylde Civic Awareness Group, where a vote of 'No Confidence' in the present Cabinet of Fylde Borough Council
was overwhelmingly passed. Speaker after speaker denounced a Cabinet that did not act on the wishes of its residents.....
|Snippets April 08
16 April 2008
An anthology of snippets: Public meeting news, parish poll news, Lytham Information Centre, Dune Conservation, Office Space and costs, High Performing
Council 2, and High Performing Council 3 - (which gives life to the quote from HPC1 that "... All the while the council's services are going down the pan......".
|Walking on Water
11 April 2008
At last the hidden agenda is exposed. Thanks to Kensington, we can all see it's not about the operating cost of St Anne's Pool, its about asset stripping
public facilities to fund promenade re-development. But this time he's probably bitten off more than he can chew. His friends in Blackpool can tell him about demolishing the
Derby Baths an act of municipal vandalism that still rankles with most folk around here - and that was 40 years ago.....
and Planning 4 April 2008
In its plan to asset-strip the site of St Anne's Swimming Pool - probably to fund redevelopment of the promenade - Fylde Council seems to
have forgotten its own planning policies prevent it from redeveloping buildings currently used for sport and recreational purposes for other uses. Is this another own
and Polls 29 March 2008
We report the Parish Meeting called by St Annes resident Bill Whitehead at St Annes Cricket Club in order to call for a Parish Poll
about FBC's proposed closure of the swimming pools......
Railroad 26 March 2008
The South Fylde line is on track to be designated a 'Community Rail Partnership'. So what's that all about then, and why are the local user
group angry about Re:Blackpool's plans to run trams on the line as well as trains......
24 March 2008
Fylde introduces more on the spot fines with dog control orders, but says it won't use microchips for weighing waste. (That's going to be the job of a new
QUANGO at least that's what the Government might have in store for us)......
OK? 21 March 2008
Two St Anne's Town Councillors vote to oppose closing St Anne's Pool, but then vote to close it at the Borough Council meeting. A member of the public
tears a strip off them in the meeting for being two faced, and calls on them to resign.....
|All Aboard ? 19 March
Two weeks away from the Commissar's dreaded free offpeak bus travel for OAPs, we ask - will FBC go bankrupt to pay for them? Which bus services are eligible? Why is he
offering extra non-statutory free travel? And what happens when you apply for a pass......
Losing Ground 17
As Council Tax bills drop through letterboxes this week, we do an in-depth look at why there are big new costs on this year's bill when increases are supposed to
be limited to 5%. Is the Commissar conning us..... again?......
13 March 2008
The Commissar has been giving the media inaccurate figures recently. We look at Fylde's spinsystem, and the Media Policy it uses. Suzie looks to be in the
clear, but the 'whole truth' seems to have gone down the pan.......
|Road Going Nowhere
12 March 2008
The A585 relief road is more or less cancelled for the next 20 years. Is this good news or bad? Will it ever get built? Is it, like the Red Route, consigned to
history because we chose the wrong option? ......
of Democracy 8 March 2008
Exclusive.Our pen picture of the Fylde Council meeting that voted to close Saint
Anne's Swimming Pool only 20 years after it was built. Who said what?, and who voted to close it?.....
Council ? 5 March 2008
We (exceptionally) publish someone else's view of just what a high performing Council Fylde is. You might be amused.....
|Pool Transport 1 March
See how the Commissar is using con tricks with bus pass spending to justify threatening to close swimming pools. But is he really going to close them? We expose
the spin and deception in his justification, and look into some possible hidden agendas....
|Sink or Swim 25 February
We look again at the threat to close the pools. Why have the operating costs been inflated? Is it an asset stripping scheme to release the site values for
commercial development? It's starting to smell like that........
Money Gone? 25 February 2008
We look into more of Fylde's financial incompetence. This time it's a £709,000 overspend in the Street Scene department. We get closer
to what's happened, and why we might be subsidising Wyre's Council Tax......
|Growth Point Bid 19
Fylde Council prepared to debate the 'Blackpool and Central Lancashire Growth Point Bid' that will see development on Fylde's green land but mostly benefit
renewal and regeneration in Blackpool and perhaps Preston. What will it mean for us?.......
|Stamp Them Out 18
Lytham supports Mark Bamforth's Warton Street Post Office against closure, but the die is already cast by the EU. Thousands protest but 3,000 'uncommercial'
post offices are to close. We used to have public services, but that's changed now business is governing us through Europe.......
Pools Protest 14
Kirkhamites protest at plans to close their baths, and the Politburo Cabinet votes to close both them and St Anne's Pool. However, a Cabinet split appears as
Dim Tim tries to get a new pool built at Mythop Road and Simon Renwick tries to keep Kirkham open - or it is all just good theatre at Lowther Pavilion........
|In Deep Water 9
The Commissar is going to close St Annes Pool and maybe Kirkham Baths because his spending on the Street Scene department is "Spiralling out of Control"
But we hear he is going to blame St Annes and Kirkham Town Councils for the closure because they refuse to rip us off........
|Top of the Pits 7
The Government releases new stats about the most deprived areas in England. Blackpool is Lancashire's pits, and Fylde is Lancashire's second least
deprived area. It that why they get an extra £85m and Fylde gets a cut? Does the Commissar want us downgraded for more cash........
|Settling In -
Jan 08 2 February 2008
Fylde Council's new intake of Councillors will soon complete their first year. We give a snapshot of their situation, and the Council
meeting. Who's doing well, and what's the Commissar up to now with this 'MAA' we wonder........
Fraud? 28 January 2008
John Coombes hides a £609,000 overspend then threatens swimming pool closure (again). But his £1 million shortfall has already been solved by
raiding Fylde's piggy-bank of 'Earmarked Reserves.' We ask is he incompetent or is it an intention to deceive that amounts to fraud?.....
2008 20 January 2008
See what Fylde Council's Politburo Cabinet is up to this January. Tourism, Parish Charter, Open Space Management in Kirkham, New Office
Accommodation, Financial Report, and the awful dropping of the Article 4 Directive, along with individual member decisions and a supposedly secret report that was published on
the Internet. They're all in here.....
Approved 18 January 2008
A process of attrition ground down the opposition, and Fylde's DC Committee approved Muir's plan to dump a hostel for the transient homeless in
Heeley Road St Anne's. But is the fat lady singing yet?.......
Heeley Road Hostel
Plans 11 January 2008
The meeting to decide Muir's application to build a hostel for the transient homeless is next Wednesday. The report recommends approval, the police
say they expect trouble (and they upset the Meteoric Karen Buckley). We hear first hand from someone who lived near to a unit like this. She said "for Gods sake get it
stopped." We have more .....
Dated: 31 December 2008