Sunday, 27 April 2008

Macmillan Run.....well walk actually

Just to let you know that Sue managed to do the 5K walk from Villa Park to the Alexandra Stadium today despite the plaster cast. She was accompanied by Cllr Penny Wagg, her husband Trevor and funnily enough Steve Dyson, editor of the Birmingham Mail. Sue has raised well over £100 for in sponsorship.
Keith was doing his own walk, around the streets and roads of Longbridge. All the signs are looking good but there can be no let-up before Thursday. Keith has always believed in over-kill when it comes to getting rid of socialists.
On Friday evening we attended the Chairman's Charity Dinner for Bromsgrove District Council at Hagley Hall. Excellent food and wine, good speeches including one from Lord Cobham. The raffle raised well over £1000 for charity and a great night was enjoyed by all.

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Labour desperation

We see our opponent is putting out a letter from Liz Dawn, a former Corrie actress, stating that only Labour can beat the BNP in Longbridge. This is blatantly untrue and is designed to get their own supporters out on polling day. Our canvassing shows that the Labour vote has all but collapsed and this letter is a desperate attempt to shore it up. It will not work. Labour treat people as if they are stupid but the electorate know that this is a straight fight between Labour and Conservative and we believe this cynical move will backfire on them.
The letter is included with the Labour election address and a letter from our opponent, a very expensive way of getting literature out. Putting 3 items in one envelope dilutes the effect but we understand why they have done this. Their supporters have drifted away, they have no-one to deliver the literature which means they are even further isolated from the real concerns of local people.
If you want to know what people really think and what their concerns are you have to walk the streets and knock on doors. Sadly Labour's resources are so depleted they cannot do this.
We shall be examining their election expenses to ensure this expensive postage is fully declared.

Friday, 18 April 2008

A & E = Arse from elbow

You may remember us telling you about Sue slipping on the decking and ending up at A & E at Selly Oak. After nearly a week the wrist got worse and worse and on Monday she again went to the hospital as the pain was unbearable. A doctor there sent her for another x-ray but the x-ray dept refused to do it on the grounds that they had done one already and it showed nothing. Back to the doctor who said he would arrange an appointment for an emergency bone scan. Sue spent most of Tuesday on the phone arranging this. Back to Selly Oak on Wednesday to see a consultant who immediately ordered an x-ray. This showed a broken arm and a chipped bone in the ankle. Sue now has her arm in a cast, in a very fetching shade of blue, and a big boot. A letter is on it's way to the chief exec.

Sunday, 13 April 2008

That time of year.

The local election is less than 3 weeks away and as you can appreciate we are extremely busy winning it. Because we have to devote ourselves to the task there may not be many posts in the meantime. We also know that the Labour Party view this blog in order to find out what is going on in the ward. It is about their only source of information as their supporters have long since drifted away and they spend little time in Longbridge. They are short on resources and we have no wish to supply them with information and a timetable of our activities. After the election we will let you know all the gory details and resume our diary of activities, in the meantime thank you for your patience and a big thank you to all of you who we know are helping our effort!

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Cofton Park



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I don't believe it!

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A tale of two Halves.

Yesterday we went to Cofton Park for the annual Austin/MG/Rover day when owners from all over the country gather to show off their cars and remember the great days of the Longbridge plant.
Keith got stuck directing traffic with Gemma Cartwright but Ken & Sue had a good look at the show. Ken was fascinated by this vehicle which appeared to be a Rover SD1but had a Volvo rear end. His main question was "WHY?" Some more photos to give you some idea of the size of the event.
This am we have been up on The Roundabout painting some cable boxes. This has to be done regularly in order to beat the taggers, which we are determined to do. They will get fed up before we do.

Austin Day at Cofton Park

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Wednesday, 9 April 2008

David comes to town

A visit from David Cameron on Monday. Councillors and candidates met up at the Council House for a pep talk. Not that we need one, things are going very well and the opposition seem very short of resources and ideas. Unfortunately Sue had an accident on Monday night, she slipped on some ice on the decking at the back of the house and we ended up at Selly Oak hospital in the middle of the night. We went through very quickly and were out in an hour after x-rays, some painkillers and a wrist support.
On Tuesday we were at Forestdale School for a meeting of the Community Park project group. Some progress looks likely, the Planning Application goes to the committee on the 24th and we hope to see some work begin after that. Keith was trolling round the local police stations that evening on a Custody Visit. Both Bournville Lane and Kings Heath were quiet but Belgrave Lane was full. Luckily it was finished in time to watch the Liverpool/Arsenal match. Very entertaining.
A busy day today, Sue is off to the Fostering Panel in Yardley, Keith has a pre-agenda meeting to sort out the next Vulnerable Children's committee followed by the Education Committee. This evening he is off to visit a children's home.

Sunday, 6 April 2008


As there is an election on we had better have one of these:
Promoted by K. Barton of 177 Groveley Lane Longbridge Birmingham B31 4QA on behalf of Longbridge Conservatives of 177 Groveley Lane Longbridge Birmingham B31 4QA.
So now you know.

Old Hare & Hounds


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Let it snow......

A big surprise this morning to find so much snow had fallen. We were told to expect a "dusting of snow" not 3-4 inches or whatever that is in centimethingys. Still we have to get on with it.
The item in the Bromsgrove Standard about the meeting on Lickey Road seems to have brought a reaction with several e-mails. One of them was from the mother of the young man who lost his life in the latest incident. We offered her our condolences and will make sure we keep her up to date with developments. We have asked for a full report from the Highways Engineers for the June Ward Committee meeting and are hopeful of some good results. This morning we have been at the Old Hare & Hounds on Lickey Road for a charity event. On the way back we saw the Road Traffic Unit with their mobile speed camera and 2 motorists had been pulled in.
The event at the pub was the handover of £1350 by the Manager Dru Coleman to Ray Woods of John Taylor Hospice. This had been raised by Dru and his team and the customers over Christmas. Our thanks and congratulations to them all. The Lord Mayor came along to lend some gravitas to the occasion, he had given the Lady Mayoress the morning off but was expecting a lovely Sunday roast in return.
Keith was at the offices of Frankley Parish Council on Saturday morning to attend an advice surgery. He was disappointed to hear that a far right party is standing for election in Frankley. As they all live in Northfield this can only be seen as a publicity stunt or political opportunism. If they can win a seat they could bring nothing to the estate but they will make great play with the fact that they have won. We hope the people of Frankley will have nothing to do with them. The present members represent a wide range of political and non-political opinions and work for their community. We may not agree all the time with all their views but are proud to work with them and would be disappointed if some outsiders with their own axe to grind were to hijack this fine body.
We've put up some photos of today's event. The guy in the T-shirt is Ray Woods of the John Taylor Hospice and the smartly dressed bloke is the General Manager, Dru Coleman. You know the rest.

Friday, 4 April 2008


Another busy day with deliveries casework and paperwork at the Council House.
On Thursday evening we had a whistle stop tour from Andrew Mitchell MP. First stop was at the Innovation Building at one Devon Way. He was most impressed with the building as are we all and it points up St. Modwen's commitment to high quality buildings on the site.
Next we went to Kings Norton to see Oddingley Hall which is being built for the use of the local community. Afterwards to The Green to look at some of the parking problems. Finally he met up with Eddie Freeman and went off to Weoley for some leafleting. The rest of us grabbed our leaflets and set off. We got 3000 delivered in 2 hours, not bad going.
On Friday it was back to the Council House for Keith for a meeting of the Co-Ordinating Committee. At this we discussed the growth agenda. Labour are still obsessed with demolishing homes. We wouldn't mind if they had managed to build a few but whole areas suffered demolitions without corresponding new builds. This led, particularly in the South West to the wiping out of all spare capacity and has left us with a massive housing shortage, but still they keep on wanting to pull houses down. Why can't they learn from their mistakes?

Cllr Geoff Sutton, Keely & Andrew Mitchell MP

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Cllr Geoff Sutton with Andrew Mitchell MP at Oddingley Hall.

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Ken & Andrew with the MG/Rover Masterplan.

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Andrew Mitchell, Ken & Keith.

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Andrew Mithchell MP, Ken, Keely

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Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Here we go again.

Monday morning saw us both at our desks (okay, our desk)catching up with phone calls, paperwork and e-mails from over the weekend. This included casework from the Saturday advice surgery and contacts from people in the ward needing help. One of these was a follow up on the broken sewer pipe that Keith had been to see on Sunday morning. The couple had been bravely sticking it out but some water(?) had seeped into the kitchen and damaged the carpets. This will all have to be claimed for.
That afternoon we went to the Elections Office to put in Ken Wood's nomination papers for the upcoming elections. Sue went to a farewell gathering for Ian Coghill who is retiring after a lifetime of work for the Council. Ian was Assistant Director for Community Safety and his contribution on waste management, environmental services and community safety has been immense. He is going to carry on working on the PFI scheme for 2 days a week but we are sorry to lose him. If anyone has earned a long and happy retirement it is Ian. Best wishes.
Keith missed this event as he had to attend the pre-group meeting before the group meeting.
On Tuesday it was the Council Meeting. This was again not as rumbustious as it might have been considering it is just before the elections. The Labour Group is still in a sorry state. Some news though, Cath Grundy is not stepping down after all. She had announced that she could not continue due to pressure of work although rumours from a Labour source suggested that she had jumped before being pushed. However it now seems that she has decided to fight for re-selection despite not being able to do the job properly due to pressure of work. A bit of a rum do but another rumour was that former Cllr Stewart Stacey, the Butcher of Broad Street, was thinking of applying for the seat. Albert Bore may possibly view this with as much delight as he would body surfing in the product of the broken sewer referred to above but that is of course speculation.
Today, Wednesday, we held a public meeting on Lickey Rd to discuss traffic accidents that have claimed several lives mainly due to speed. Ken Wood has organised a petition for a speed camera and we are hopeful of getting one.