News from British and Canadian Conservatives

Friday, September 30, 2005

Conservatives Gain New Romney

Stephenson - Conservative 560 - 66.2%

Labour 175 - 20.7%

Liberal Democrat 111 - 13.1%

Turnout - 33.5%

Swing from 2003 - 16.59% Labour to Conservative

Friday, September 23, 2005

Regional Plan

Last night I attended the Shepway pre-meeting about the South East Regional Plan. It is a Government initiative to operate along side the existing Strategic Plans, Local Plans, Market Town Health Checks, Parish Maps and Parish Design Statements. So not another layer of totally unnecessary bureaucracy at all then!

The key obkective of the exercise was for District, Town and Parish councillors to come together to discuss where we should put all the houses which we're supposed to need according to the Government and the various suggestions made by the Regional Assembly. We generally agreed that it was daft to opt to put additional houses in Dover in that it may be the only area which does not get the High Speed Trains. We therefore suggested that we should seek to expand existing settlements in Shepway so that local people can find homes close to where they grew up, and to particularly expand Sellinge and Lympne, which have lots of space without environmental restrictions and with good access to Ashford, which is likely to be the major local hub for facilities and employment.

In the next stage of the process I will be pushing for transport infrastructure to ensure that people in the new settlements are drawn to Folkestone, preserving our shops, services and helping local businesses to attract the right staff. I will also be pushing for improved connectivity between Folkestone and the low unemplyment, high wage towns in the west of the county - particularly Maidstone.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Mexican Evening

Morehall Conservatives will be hosting a Mexican Evening in Shorncliffe Road on 15th October. Tickets will be £8 and will include Mexican foods such as Quesadillas, Nachos and Enchiladas. If you would like a ticket, please call me on 07774013091 or email me at dan.hassett@ntlworld.com

In Touch with Morehall

A new edition of the Conservative Newsletter "In Touch" will be delivered to households across Folkestone over the next week. The edition includes a new Morehall newsletter, to inform people about my work for the ward, and to help people to know how to get in touch with the local Conservative team.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Full Council Meeting

Last night's well attended meeting saw the Town Council voting to ask the Deputy Prime Minister to call in the planning consent granted to Trent Developments for Folkestone Sea Front. No-one voted against. Several members of the public had spoken against the plans during the open forum section of the meeting. Jimmy Godden, local businessman and Tren't partner in the development was also present at the meeting but did not speak.

Cllr Shirley Newlands, District Secretary for the Environment and SDC officer Jonathan Lund also addressed the council to answer questions about Ground Maintenance in Folkestone. They agreed that the current situation is not acceptable, and assured us that negotiations were under way and improvements would soon be visible. Details of problem flower beds in the town were also requested, and I will provide a list of ones which concern me, focussing on those in Cheriton and Morehall and the more prominent parts of Folkestone

The meeting also discussed the payment of allowances to Councillors. It seems that the majority remain opposed to the idea, but it was agreed that the Finance and General Purposes Committee should make further investigations before a final decision is made. The Conservative Group has agreed to oppose payment of allowances and I spoke against the proposal.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Seafront Development

Today's meeting at the top of the Leas, organised by 2 Folkestone Residents opposed to the Trent/Godden proposals, was well attended. Those present included several councillors from across the groups, as well as Toby Atkinson of Trent Developments and memebers of both the local and national press.