Council meeting as an assembly

The council leadership recently announced that the next “meeting as an assembly” will be held in Ormskirk in January – for the fourth year running. Do they realise that less than a third of the population of West Lancs lives in Ormskirk?

The council constitution clearly states that the meeting should be rotated around the district (see here ). The areas should be in Ormskirk, Northern Parishes and Skelmersdale. By my reckoning it’s time that the meeting is held in Skem.

Next year promises to be an important year for Skelmersdale: the results of the LSVT ballot will be known, the Skelmersdale Visioning process could bring massive investment into the town, and there has been the recently announced £3.7 million for the town.

It’s a sign of the contempt that the Tories have for the town, that they have chosen to hold the meeting in Ormskirk for a fourth year running.

I’ve tabled a motion to the full council for the 7th December calling for the meeting as an assembly to be held in Skem instead. It could be held at the Ecumenical Centre, the investment centre at Junction 4, or at Glenburn High School. I hope that they take some notice, but it’s likely that they’ll simply table an amendment so that it’s held in Ormskirk.

Aughton Street “Pods”

Aughton Street PodsThe Champion reports today that the Council’s plans for "pods" at the end of Aughton Street, Ormskirk will not be put forward at tomorrows planning committee. The article states that "the proposal has now been moved to allow for the ‘actual scheme being proposed by the council’ to be properly considered". The implication being that those people who are against the proposal are reacting to something that isn’t the ‘actual scheme’.

Perhaps this means that they’re going back to the drawing board, and a more appropriate design will be forthcoming.

It is also possible that the Council has learned after the experience with the "Extreme Sports Village" which was planned to be built over much of Beacon Country Park. Back then, they stuck to their original idea and consequently they were defeated by the combined pressure of local residents and local opposition councillors. It ended with a very public humiliation and back-down from the Council.

Whatever it means, the Council would do well to release some more "artists impressions" of the artwork. We are told that they are meant to "frame" the historic clock. If that’s the case, then why haven’t they got any pictures of them doing just that?

West Lancs Homes Video

Following the rather unexpected front page on the local Advertiser last week (Ebay’s Worst ‘Home Video’), I’ve been asked a few times if I had put the auction up just so I could then call the papers about it. I wish I’d been that smart!

Basically I use something called Google Alerts to keep me up to date with things that are happening locally (as well as buying the local papers, obviously!) When a new page appears on the internet that contains a particular search term I get sent an email. So when "West Lancs" appears on a page that Google knows about I get alerted, which is what happened here.

When I saw the auction, I thought it would be fun to ring the papers and that it would be a bit of an interest story following some of the more important issues around the stock transfer. I didn’t expect it to appear on the front page, but I hope that silly little story has helped bring the issue to a wider audience, and I can only thank the Advertiser for seeing the humour and running it.

New Site

I’m starting a new site today. The database on the old website had broken, and I hadn’t noticed. It could have been down for a while because I hadn’t checked it for a long time.

So I’m starting afresh. I hope that, over time, there is something of interest here.

Cheers, s.