by adamboyden on 21 May, 2017
As one of your ward councillors I need to keep you updated on a few things:
Reminder – a Hustings debate for the General Election is being held at Frome Town Football Club today Sunday 21st May at 2.00-4.00pm. All 5 candidates will be answering questions put by local people – please see here for details including how to send a question in. I’m supporting our Liberal Democrat candidate Mark Blackburn, and I hope you can too.
Mobile phone mast meeting on Monday: A planning application has been submitted by Vodafone for a 15m high mobile phone mast and base station on the corner of Grange Road with Bath Road – comprising a 15m shrouded monopole with two microwave dishes, three equipment cabinets and ancilliary works – in the corner of the footpath on the corner of Grange Road with Bath Road in Frome (application ref. 2017/1163/TEL). This is proposed because ‘As part of Vodafone and Telefonica’s continued network improvement program, there is a specific requirement for a radio base station at this location to improve coverage in the area to provide 2G/3G and 4G coverage in the area for Vodafone and Telefonica. Mobiles can only work with a network of base stations in place where people want to use their mobile phones or other wireless devices. Without base stations, the mobile phones and other devices we rely on simply won’t work.’ A few other local sites were looked at and rejected by the developer.
Due to residents concerns on the health and visual impacts, a public meeting has been arranged by Frome Town Councillor Nick White, in the Merlin Theatre foyer at 7.30pm on Monday 22nd May, so residents can view and comment on the plans. Vodafone’s consultants were invited but are not able to come. Nick can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, and the plans are available here. Mendip District Council’s planning department will accept comments until 31st May. To respond, you can email email@example.com (please copy me in) quoting planning application number 2017/1163/TEL. As this is in a residential area, I will be asking Mendip’s Planning Board chair and vice chair to call in the application for councillors on the Planning Board to determine, rather than officers.
When is a pedestrian crossing not a pedestrian crossing? When its at Bath Road Heights… The developer who has planning permission for 7 new houses at the remainder of the old Mendip Lodge Hotel site at the top of Bath Road, has proposed to install ‘dropped kerbs’ instead of a proper pedestrian crossing across Bath Road. The planning condition requires a ‘pedestrian crossing’ (which is defined by Somerset County Council as a zebra crossing or signal controlled crossings), and they are not proposing one. The road is busy at times and fast with speeds of 38 mph (85%ile in two recent surveys) and dangerous to cross for children (including College pupils) and elderly or disabled people. The site is isolated from the footpath network and there is no other way into Frome if you do not have a car – that is why a pedestrian crossing has been required under a planning condition. So I am arguing with Mendip planning and Somerset highways officers that the developer’s proposals must be refused. I have also asked the developer’s planning agents to withdraw the proposals, and meet to discuss before revising their scheme to propose a proper pedestrian crossing scheme. As this is a planning application to discharge a planning condition, Mendip is not formally consulting residents (or councillors) but is accepting comments, and as this road is not safe to cross without a crossing, the planning condition requires a crossing and the developer is not proposing one, I have arranged a meeting to discuss with the developer’s consultants and Mendip’s planning officer. Please see the plans here, and email firstname.lastname@example.org and me (quoting planning reference 2017/0992/APP) to have your say. I am also looking to Somerset County Council to work out how to slow traffic down coming into Frome here – a permanent flashing sign would be good, and the 30mph limit needs moving northwards.
The next full Frome Town Council meeting is on Wednesday 24th May, 7.00pm at Frome Town Hall – this is the annual meeting which decides the Mayor and Deputy Mayor (and membership of committees) for the next year, and there are updates on finance and the work of the council. The previous full council meeting (see the minutes) agreed ways forward on a development at Saxonvale and the Market Place and town centre road remodelling. An item on Green Infrastructure is also included. I am asking for a full update for residents on the improvements and repairs due for the old Showfield and the playground, as things are slower than expected. Please see the agenda and details here, and just turn up to have a say.
Thank you to everyone who supported me and Alex at the recent local elections. My message to all our supporters is here https://adamboyden.mycouncillor.org.uk/2017/05/05/thank-you-3/. The new Mendip ward councillor for Frome College ward, Carole Bullen (Conservative), can be contacted at email@example.com. Re-elected Somerset County Councillor for Frome North Linda Oliver (Conservative) can also be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The General Election is on June 8th. I’m supporting our Liberal Democrat candidate Mark Blackburn, and I hope you can too. Anyone who can help with the campaign – leaflets, displaying a poster/boards, helping out in the Stony Street shop, clerical or admin work, canvassing or telling on election day, please get in touch. Mark can be contacted at email@example.com, and please see more about Mark here http://www.libdems.org.uk/mark_blackburn and the Somerton & Frome Lib Dems here https://somertonandfromelibdems.org.uk/en/. Or just pop in to our new Lib Dem shop on Stony Street (open from 10am most days) for a chat and to find out more.
I will be back with a full update on all matters as usual after the election.
Thanks for reading,
Liberal Democrat, Mendip District Councillor for Frome College ward
07809 284817, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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