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Is your local school falling apart?

Hertfordshire County Council, the Local Education Authority, has confirmed its intended support for school building maintenance for 2016/17, and it is £0.

Responding to a question by Lib Dem Shadow Cabinet member for Resources, Paul Zukowskyj, County officers confirmed the Government grant for school repairs will not be topped up by a single penny from the County Council next year.

Unfunded, but approved and agreed, repairs are running at millions of pounds a year, so many schools face the misery of trying to teach schoolchildren in substandard buildings. HCC were recently assessed as being in the worst 8% of authorities, yet the Conservative administration at County Hall seem unwilling to address such a serious issue. Continue reading

Wind disrupts Thameslink on Monday 8 February

Note from Thameslink

Due to the severe weather conditions forecast for today and  Monday February 8th, speed restrictions will be in operation on some routes from 21:00 today until 03:00, and from 11:00am on Monday 8 February as a safety precaution.

We plan to run our Monday morning service as advertised, however passengers are advised that disruption is highly likely and to check their journey before travelling.

Passengers are being advised to expect delays and disruption as forecasters are predicting winds in excess of 70mph across the South Coast on Monday.

With the strength of the winds expected, railway infrastructure could be damaged as severe winds can blow debris and trees onto tracks and damage equipment and signals.

For more information on how high winds affect the railway please visit:


Consultation on additional weight restrictions in Britton Avenue and Adelaide Street

Britton Avenue weight

The County Council, after discussions with the residents’ association via Chris, will be formally be consulting on the additional weight restrictions shown above.

If you have any comments let us know or email to (please state Britton Avenue PTRO in the title) by Friday 19th January 2016. Please be specific with any comments you make.


Conservatives warned over crowdfunding

Liberal Democrat councillor Robert Donald, Chair of the City Neighbourhoods Committee, spoke strongly in favour of the District Council funding the replacement of the much used Clarence Park entrance during the recent Council budget debate. He commented after the Council had voted to accept the CNC’s recommendation to do this priority work:

I was very pleased that the portfolio holder for Resources and the Council Leader did not try to reverse the recommendations of the City Neighbourhoods Committee at the main budget meeting. An overwhelming majority of CNC members had agreed to fund various new play ground facilities and the replacement of the Clarence Park entrance using the Committee’s available Council Tax resources.  Continue reading

Temporary Closing and Temporary Waiting Restrictions in Sandpit Lane 29 February

Note from the County Council

NOTICE is given that the Hertfordshire County Council intend to make an Order under Section 14[1] of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, to prohibit all traffic from using that length of Sandpit Lane, St Albans from its junction with B651 Sandridge Road north eastwards to its junction with Marshalswick Lane, a distance of approximately 1700 metres.

ADDITIONALLY all vehicles are prohibited from waiting at any time on both sides of this length of road whilst works are in progress.

The purpose of the Order is to enable highway maintenance works to take place.

The section of road will be closed and the temporary waiting restrictions will be in place for up to 7 days during the period 29 February 2016 and 6 March 2016, when signs are in place. An alternative signed route will be provided for traffic whilst the road closure is in place.

If you have any queries about the highway maintenance works, the temporary road closure or the temporary waiting restrictions, please contact Dave Walker tel.0300 123 4047 at Ringway.

Lib Dems condemn Conservative stance on Housing Bill

Local Liberal Democrats have expressed shock and regret at the failure of the local Tory administration to support hard-working local families.

Lib Dem Leader Chris White roundly condemned those in the Conservative group who sought to belittle the threat or who urged colleagues to take no action until the Bill had become law.

He said: ‘In the council chamber this week, the Conservative Administration refused to accept the support of all members to try and lessen the impact of the Government’s Housing and Planning Bill.

‘This Bill is a clear attempt by the Government to destroy social housing in our country, and districts like ours may need to sell a huge proportion of our housing stock, with no realistic possibility that these houses will be adequately replaced. Continue reading

More resource for local parking schemes after Lib Dem amendment

A Liberal Democrat budget amendment was agreed by St Albans District Council last night which would provide an additional staff member to help with the enormous backlog of parking schemes.

Lib Dem parking spokesperson Gerard McHale said: ‘Again we proposed this last year and were defeated – so we are pleased that it went through  this time.

‘There is a huge appetite for sorting out parking schemes, from the introduction of new controlled parking zones to dealing with very specific  instances like disabled parking bays.

‘A particular problem is parking by commuters – both those using the stations and those driving  into town centres. Hopefully the extra resource can speed up the delivery of schemes where local people have been demanding action.’

Agreement on new flood fund for local residents

St Albans District Council last night agreed a Liberal Democrat proposal to create a £100,000 flood fund to help domestic and business premises which have been flooded more than once per annum over the past two years.

Chris White, Liberal Democrat Group Leader, said: ‘We introduced this idea a year ago but the other parties failed to back us. This year, I am pleased to say, we got all party support.

‘There are too many individual properties which have suffered flooding in this district. While the headlines have understandably been about the terrible events in the north of England, surface water flooding and sewage has affected homes and businesses in this area as well – in some cases for many years.

‘Currently government backed schemes are inadequate to help those affected and the costs of localised flood prevention can be very high.

‘The details of the scheme have yet to be agreed but this should provide welcome relief to some of our residents.’