July Update

July 1st to 9th:  I was away on holiday in France with all my family.  We were blessed with good weather for most of the trip and it was good to “switch off” for a while from all things technical!

This means that my Update this month is shorter than usual, and my apologies for not having any interesting photos to add this time either.

Wednesday 10th:             At 2.30pm I attended a meeting of St Mary’s Book Group and went on to visit the new homes in Church Street built by Netherdown at 4.00pm.  I was pleased to meet the owner of the company and his wife, for the first time, and congratulated them on the design of their houses which complement the village scene and fit in well with the surrounding properties.

Thursday 11th and Friday 12th were taken up with dealing with more than 100 emails and messages that had accumulated during my week’s holiday!

Monday 15th: 7.15pm Full Council Meeting.

Wednesday 17th:  More correspondence and followed up on an ongoing planning issue in North Herts.

Thursday 18th:  Development Management Committee meeting at 7.30pm.  This is the new name for the Planning Control Committee.  It was an interesting meeting with some matters taking much longer than usual, so we had a particularly late finish.

Friday 19th:  Had planned to go to Twickenham for the start of Andy Nation’s fundraising swim to Calais.  However, the weather was particularly hot and humid and my (still) sprained ankle was too swollen to cope with the long drive, so had to miss out.  My very best wishes went to Andy however, who despite his dreadful accident last year has managed to go ahead with the marathon swim challenge to raise funds for two Hertfordshire charities.

Saturday 20th:  Monthly Councillor’s Surgery at St Mary’s Church House.  Issues were raised about recent traders’ parking practise in the village, as well as other matters concerning street trading and noise.  Councillor Perkins and I spoke with one trader in particular and asked for co-operation and consideration in vehicle parking, bearing in mind that the village operates on a very limited parking capability.

Monday 22nd: Most of the day spent on paperwork and also checking up on parking matters.

Tuesday 23rd and Wednesday 24th:  Away on a 2-day golf trip to St Omer!  Very hot and stormy weather, but had a wonderful time.

Thursday 25th:  Meeting at The Wellington at 4.00pm, also visited 2 other local businesses to discuss an issue that is concerning them.  Spent some time trying to chase up an ongoing problem with bin collections on Hobbs Hill.

Friday 26th:  Some time on telephone dealing with signage/road usage problem.  Also researching information on the proposed core strategy consultations of North Herts DC which will affect Welwyn residents.   11:30pm went into visit to check on noise levels and disturbance, following complaints received.

Saturday 27th: Checked village 4 times for parking status during the day.  At 12.30am went to the village to monitor noise and disturbance level; unofficially – just to check because of the recent complaints received.

Monday 29th:  After a morning dealing with emails, at 2.00pm I attended Licensing Training at Campus West.  I found the session stimulating and educational and was reminded just how much there is to learn and the responsibility of being a member of the Licensing and Entertainment Committee.  It was quite a long session, but the time passed quickly because it was so interesting.

My first Hearing as a new member of the Committee was to have been on 2nd September but, as the License under review is local to my Ward of Welwyn West, and as both residents and Licensee have approached me for assistance, I have been withdrawn from the Panel for that Hearing.  This is standard practise in relation to a Ward Councillor and I am greatly relieved as I was very much a “piggy in the middle” in this case.

I just got home in time to have a quick meal and shoot out again to attend the Welwyn Parish Council Meeting  at 7.30pm.  Another late night!

Wednesday 31st:  10.30am Licensing Committee Meeting.  My first one and it was extremely interesting to hear all the reports and updates from Police and Environment.   Over the weekend, I received a request from Cllr Perkins to accompany her to the License Review Hearing on 2nd  September.   As this was contrary to advice that I had been given on Monday, I discussed this with the Committee Chairman and Officers and was officially advised that I should not attend.

POLICE AND CRIME COMMISSIONNER:  Still no response to my email!  I shall be taking up the matter further as I am concerned and angry that no action appears to have been taken with regard to dangerous driving on the Codicote Road.  This week another accident was narrowly avoided: the post van pulled out from my driveway into the Codicote Road and had to swerve into the bank to avoid an oncoming speeding vehicle, which mounted the pavement, just missing a pedestrian.  Something must be done.  Does someone really have to die before any action is taken?  As for the Police and Crime Commissioner – I ask the question “What exactly is he doing?”  I have yet to see a report to the Council from the Leader and Deputy Leader, who were appointed to sit on the Panel.

Local Burglaries:  Comforting as it is to be advised that those responsible for the recent spate of burglaries in the Welwyn West area have been apprehended, it is of greater concern to know that they have been released on bail!  The public would doubtless appreciate knowing why, and what the incentive is for those who have committed these crimes not to reoffend!

I hope all of you who read my updates are enjoying our lovely summer weather.  August looks as though it may be another fairly quiet month for Council matters as so many people are on holiday.   I will of course keep you posted on any local matters of interest.

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