This week’s Bromsgrove and Droitwich Standard letters.
THE CHAOS and incompetence at the heart of this Conservative Government is causing real problems for families in Wychavon.
Our NHS is on its knees, crime goes unpunished, and like all local authorities, our services are being put under intolerable pressure by ministers’ refusal to accept reality.
Here, in Wychavon, we are receiving £7.47million less support from central government that we did under Labour – and our overall spending power has fallen by 28 per cent.
Now, just days before councils set the most difficult budget in years, and many months after the cross-party Local Government Association warned that soaring demand for social care and temporary accommodation was posing an existential risk to council budgets, the government has finally backtracked on its catastrophic Local Government Finance Settlement for 2024/25 and announced some extra funding – but it’s just more sticking plaster politics.
Our area is still not getting a fair deal – not fair for those who rely on our services and not fair in comparison to other parts of the country.
This comes from a Prime Minister who promised Tory activists he would take money away from areas in need and give it to richer areas as a bribe to win their votes.
The bottom line is that this emergency hand-out is an admission of total failure from an increasingly chaotic Conservative government that has sole responsibility for pushing so many local councils to breaking point over the last 14 years.
What we really need is a government that has a proper plan. Our country needs the security and stability that only a new government can deliver. The only real solution is a general election now.
Chair of Droitwich and Evesham Constituency Labour Party
THE FIVE-minute trip into Bromsgrove often takes 20 minutes, and sometimes I give up and turn around.
Whitford Road was closed, and the recommended diversion, Worcester Road, has got its own roadworks with traffic lights!
The alternative route to Worcester Road, the Eastern Bypass, has lane closures.
How do we get into town?
INTERESTING article in Standard, outlining a roll-out in Bromsgrove of a substantial number of electric vehicle chargers on several locations around the district. Great to learn that installation work is soon to start.
The article suggests the new chargers will be on council car parks. Can I suggest that Bromsgrove already has more than enough under used EV chargers on the councils car parks.
What EV owners, and residents considering buying or leasing EVs in Bromsgrove really need are what is termed ‘on street’ charging points.
The majority of homes in the district allow parking on driveways, garages, or what where former front gardens.
EV owners are then able to charge their vehicle at low cost from their own electricity supply.
They are the lucky ones. Others who live on narrow roads or live in flats with no off-road parking are deterred from buying an EV because of the need to charge up away from home.
Bromsgrove already has real air quality problems even before the recent mega congestion due to current road works programme.
Several areas in and around the town fail to meet the EU recommended max levels of air pollution.
EVs can drastically improve the situation for all of us and need to be encouraged. I notice so many children needing to use inhalers to counter the pollution and improve their breathing.
Surely some of this Government funding could be allocated to installing charging points in areas where homes do not have off-road parking. Other districts have smaller charging points on posts on path, or run from street lighting poles or in allocated parking bays.
Can we hope that Bromsgrove Council and the installation company Zest pause this scheme and consider an alternative split on the installations?
FOR MANY years I have been involved in local politics and since living in Romsley I have used this experience to achieve a lot in the village but only with the massive assistance through this newspaper to highlight the poor public services.
Among them have been pot holes, road surfacing, retaining local bus service, safety of children’s play equipment.
What I am trying to say is, if we relied on our elected politicians to carry through whats said on their leaflets, we would go nowhere.
So some of us like myself beat the drum in our own ways – newspapers, petitions all go towards getting our monies worth.
So today after two years of campaigning for a real purpose for going out to vote in our elections, I get a reply from a Governmentt Cabinet Minister stating my suggestion was that important that it requires the Government Policy Makers to reply to me.
Well here was my suggestion that was in that letter:
That each Political Party going up for election should Legally swear in their Manifesto Policies. (meaning no more promises and pledges!)
It would simply read as follows:-
‘That we the party swear in our policies as listed in our manifesto, in that we will carry them through or at the very least be seen to attempt to carry them through.
“And that failure on either to carry through or attempt, would mean we stand down to create another election.’
That simple statement means we will no longer be voting on promises, pledges etc that in no way materialise, that we are voting for at present and simply have no say about it later.
No party wants to swear this because they would no longer offer you what they know themselves would never be carried through.
But we the people need this surety.
CHILDREN’S Mental Health Week, which began on Monday and runs until Sunday, is an ideal time for parents to have open conversations with youngsters about issues they may not otherwise raise.
With the challenging conditions posed by life in 2024, social media and many young people having been impacted by the pandemic in the past few years, this is now more important than ever.
Visit our website and search for ‘Children’s Mental Health’ for more help and advice about approaching the subject.