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14th Jun, 2021

Your Letters: Street lighting, politics and safeguarding our parks

Redditch Editorial 4th Apr, 2021

A MAJOR safety point that the recent tragic death of Sarah Everard has highlighted, is the need to review the county council policy of switching off some street lights and dimming others at night.

Most people feel safer walking at night in built up areas where the paths and streets are well lit and others can be easily seen.

If we are really serious about helping make people feel safer particularly women walking on their own, we need to listen to them and reduce opportunities for people to threaten. It is also likely to assist the Police in reducing crime.

There are two ways of achieving this, and they go together.

One is to have every light functioning and the second longer term solution is to quicken the pace of converting all street lights to modern LED light columns.

This means that with a modern more environmentally friendly set of lights, none need to be dimmed or switched off.

All in all, a very sensible and practical way of making our streets safer.

I call on the county council to act on this policy urgently.

R Lunn. County Councillor. Redditch North

REGARDING Councillor Brunner’s decision to stand as an independent (Redditch Standard). The Conservatives took control in 2018, not 2017 as reported. In fact, we failed to take control in 2017 under Juliet’s leadership. In 2018 she was largely absent.

That victory belonged to the superb tranche of candidates who stood in that year and I cannot allow their work to be denigrated.

Since 2018 we have had a strong team of Councillors and candidates who are working hard for Redditch.

We have turned our team around from being one of the worst performing in the Midlands into being one of the best that expects high standards and a relentless focus on delivering better things for the people of Redditch.

In regards to selections whilst we don’t comment on individual cases I can confirm the Conservative Party follows a democratic and transparent procedure which puts local party members at the heart of our selection decisions.

Finally, given Juliet’s strength of feeling we assume she will now resign her borough council seat she was elected to as a Conservative in 2019 and will be contesting it at the upcoming elections in addition to the county council seat – especially as the cemetery issue is a borough council matter and not a county council matter.

A Evans,

Conservative candidate for Arrow Valley West and Headless Cross & Oakenshaw

I NOTE that the election season must be upon us going by the sights and sounds of petitions being launched by the Redditch Conservatives.

There are two that spring to mind.

The first being a petition for a pedestrian crossing in Batchley Road.

I agree that speeding, poor parking and dangerous junctions need to be addressed.

However Councillor Brandon Clayton (Cons, Redditch North) was elected on a promise of a safe junction at Batchley / Hewell Roads.

Yet four years later no improvements have been made.

I wonder why it has taken four years for the Redditch Conservatives to now show an interest in road safety.

Compare that to Coun Robin Lunn (Labour Redditch North) who, over the last four years has funded contributions to three safe crossing areas in Batchley and Brockhill alone.

The second petition is for a safe crossing outside Roman Way School.

Readers may well remember that 14 school crossing patrols were abolished by Worcestershire County Council.

Where was the outcry and petitions from the local Conservatives then? Bearing in mind they hold five of the eight county council seats in Redditch.

P Berry,

Labour candidate for Batchley and Brockhill and Redditch South

I WRITE in response to Councilor Mike Rouse’s retort to my letter (Redditch Standard).

Coun Rouse says ‘we’re living in an age of misinformation’ that I ‘claim the council is not investing in parks’, he goes on to end by saying ‘(his record of investment)…won’t be held back by misinformation and negativity being spread by the few’!

I was quite frankly appalled that the deputy leader of the council saw fit to publicly change the narrative of what I wrote and misquote me. In view of this is it not he spreading misinformation?

I openly supported the proposed enhancements to Morton Stanley Park and did not suggest for one moment there had been no investment in the parks of Redditch!

I merely pointed out the irony of the council’s strap line, ‘investing in our parks’, whilst they are simultaneously planning the controversial removal of some of our existing parkland in Arrow Valley Park, that the council themselves describe as ‘the Jewel in the crown of Redditch’, for use as a cemetery.

Perhaps the deputy leader would like to re-read my original letter where I quite clearly did not accuse the council of not investing in parks? Maybe he knew exactly what he was doing and took the opportunity to use his response as part of a political campaign to win votes on the run up to the local elections whilst at the same time unfairly muddying my name and trying to discredit me? I find this behaviour truly unacceptable.

B Kirby, Redditch

REGARDING Councillor Brunner’s decision to leave the Conservatives and go independent, it’s interesting to see Councillor Matt Dormer’s rather contradictory response.

First he is saying he had no part in the selection process, then he is telling us her application was the worst of the lot!

Don’t the Tories believe in General Data Protection Regulation?

What a terrible breach of confidentiality.

S Ball, Winyates

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