Monday, 26 July 2010

Tenbury Police Investigate Hoax

Tenbury Police are investigating a number of hoax emails that have been sent to the local press and various other local organisations.

The emails that purport to have been sent by a Tenbury Councillor, included resignation letters sent to their employer and the Town Council.

Town Council Plunder Charity Fund

Members of Tenbury Town Council voted tonight to transfer the majority of the 'recycling fund' to help pay for the Regal Heating Bill.

Each year, WCC pay TTC a fee per tonne for all recyclable items diverted from landfill and recycled in the Cardboard, Paper & Glass Banks on the Palmers Car Park.

This fund is then used to make charitable donations, (and for unexpected expenditure).

What I find amazing is there has been no discussion (in Public) about what remedial action should be taken to stop another excessive bill being run up in the future.

Tenbury's Big Dig

Hole prepared for archaeological digWork was started today by the County archaeological service to investigate the archaeological history of the Cattle Market site. Although there is some confusion and conflicting newspaper articles about Tesco's intentions and whether they have abandoned the site or are planning to reapply with a new scheme the dig started as planned.

Update 27th July 2010 : Tesco's have confirmed to the Shropshire Star that they have not abandoned the site and will be making a new application.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Tesco's statement about Tenbury plan withdrawal.

Sophie Akokhia, corporate affairs manager for Tesco, said: “We have had some positive support so far from local shoppers and traders in the town but this is a complicated scheme with lots of individual aspects to be considered. While both the conservation area and planning applications were progressing well and discussions with third parties were ongoing, it became apparent that we would be unable to resolve all the complex issues associated with the site within the council’s administrative deadlines.

“As a result we have regrettably withdrawn the planning application to enable further consultation to take place, with a view to resubmission in the near future.”

Friday, 23 July 2010

Tesco's withdraw their Tenbury plan

Following the decision by the MHDC planning department to refuse permission to demolish the Old Infirmary Building (also known as the Market Office) to make way for the new store, Tescos have decided to withdraw their planning application.

The archaeological investigation, due to start on Monday by the Field Section of WCC Historic Environment & Archaeology Service, is still expected to proceed.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Tenbury goes Virtual

Tenbury Chamber of Trade Advert
The Tenbury Chamber of Trade have teamed up with Tenburyweb to produce a virtual town.

Skillsmart have awarded a small grant to the Chamber of Trade to promote the retailers of Tenbury. Part of the grant will be spent on a series of adverts promoting the Town's shops and businesses, and also on upgrading the Chamber website.

There will be links from the website to all businesses (including non members) existing websites. Any business without a website will be offered a simple one page website for general information.

Visitors to the website will be able to take a virtual stroll through the shopping streets to get a feel for the number and type of mostly independent shops that they will find on arrival.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Tenbury Cattle Market Car Park to Close

View of cattle market site from Teme Street

The former cattle market site will be closed from 8am next Monday 26th July, for an archaeological evaluation to determine the site’s historical value & to make sure that works can be carried out safely.

The evaluation is required by Malvern Hills District Council to assess whether any further excavation would be needed if Tesco was granted planning permission for a new environmental format store.

A desk study has already been carried out, which established that the site could potentially hold remains dating back to the medieval town, particularly in the western part of the site which would have lain within the medieval town boundary.

A digger will be used to excavate the trenches and remove excess earth to allow archaeologists to excavate the site by hand. The findings will be studied and a report will be submitted to the local planning authority.

Sophie Akokhia, corporate affairs manager for Tesco, said: “This is a very important evaluation which would need to be carried out ahead of any potential development on this site.

“The study is a requirement of Tesco’s planning application but this work also provides a valuable opportunity to investigate Tenbury's historical development. Very little archaeological investigation has been carried out within the town to date and we could have some interesting discoveries to report on.”

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Market Street Toilets

Market Street Toilets

A quick competition (with no prizes). Guess how much the opening ceremony must have cost. Count all the people being paid out of the public purse, plus the 'bun fight' in the Pub opposite.

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

One small step forward.

Back in April 2009 I wrote a blog entitled Chocolate Teapot about the poor provision in Tenbury for helping the unemployed find work. Although Tenbury is considered a 'hub' Market Town, you have to travel (at your own expense) to Leominster or Kidderminster to visit the job centre and to sign on.

Progress has been slow, but following the highlighting of the problem (and additional behind the scenes lobbying) and the involvement of the local MP & County Cllr (and others) finally the situation has taken one small step forward. A phone has been installed in the library for job seekers to contact the job centre.

Work is still progressing to arrange for a regular visit by Job Centre staff to come to Tenbury instead of requiring all the Town's unemployed to make regular pilgrimages to the Job Centre.

Thankfully the numbers of job seekers in Town is not high, but with the renewed focus on moving people from other benefits back into employment the numbers may increase.

Tenbury & Burford has lost a number of key employers over the years, and as yet a lack of inward investment has failed to create additional jobs in areas such as the business park.

There are plans in the pipeline for over 100 new houses in Tenbury and perhaps more in Burford. Unless we are to be increasingly a dormitory Town feeding Worcester, Malvern etc and beyond, we need to attract more employers to the area.

Tenbury is an idyllic place to live, but to have the majority of the working population travelling in excess of 50 miles a day, mostly by Car is hardly a sensible and sustainable solution.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Tenbury Regal - I was wrong.

(or was I)

In November 2009 I speculated that the heating at the Regal was costing up to £164 a day.

In December 2009 The Town Clerk was reported by the Tenbury Advertiser as saying my comments were "unhelpful".

In February 2010 A new meter was fitted and the Tariff was reduced.

In April 2010 I said "The Council still haven't received the electricity bill, but feel that it is unlikely to exceed £265 (Did I mishear or are they completely mad) Still there is the option that it is me that is completely deluded and my estimate of £75 per day is way off the mark. Guess time will tell."

In June 2010 The Town Clerk reported that the reduced Tariff had been back dated, as the delays in fitting the new meter were the fault of the supplier and not the Town Council.

And now I can reveal that the bill has finally arrived, and it's a touch more than £265.

At £10,710.56 (for 219 days) it is £48.90 a day, which I accept is much less than my (reduced) estimate of £75 per day, but of course the average has benefited from the last few months of above average temperatures.

Now, before I get the usual batch of hate mail and threats for posting a negative blog about Tenbury Town Council, remember all the decisions about installing the Electric Furnace were made in private by the Town Council with no public access to the meetings or the minutes.

I believe that very little was done in the way of running cost calculations before deciding on the electric system, it was chosen purely on the basis of least capital cost, (The Town will be paying the Capital cost of this boiler until 2019.) and even after I and a number of other people pointed out the the heating was being run up to 24 hours a day and the building was uncomfortably hot, little or no action was taken.