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Friday, 31 July 2009

Toddlers Play Area - Rubbish x 2.

Unfortunately, the new toddlers play area hasn't fared too well - with it proving to be a magnet for Antisocial behaviour.

The apparent reason is that we should have built the bigger park first, giving these kids somewhere to go. Although we expected the ASB and the excuses to a certain extent, it's still a load of rubbish. I don't care how bored someone thinks they are, it's not an excuse to cause criminal damage. The selfish little so and so's have got more to do than I had growing up.

Plans are currently underway to deal with this - which I don't want to go into too much now, but things will happen.

However - there's another source of rubbish at the park, and that's the litter bins. They filled up in the first week and have been overflowing ever since. There's rubbish all over the shop and no one is to blame except us (Cheshire East).

I've dealt with this now, and I'm promised that they will be emptied immediately and added to the rota for regular litter picking, bin emptying and grass cutting.

Planning system

One of the excellent systems that Cheshire East inherited from MBC (there were many - although the Crewe and Congleton Councillors may rebut that) was our planning system.

This allows any member of the public to search and review planning documents online. It means that the process is far more transparent than it once was, and allows residents to keep an eye on how applications in their area are progressing.

Unfortunately, it's slightly misleading in one sense. The system mentions that it is updated daily, when in fact it is batch updated on a weekly basis with support/objections from residents. This causes quite an amount of consternation when a response is sent and does not appear, resulting in residents thinking their response has been lost or ignored.

So I've written to the head of planning:

We all know how crucial planning applications are to those involved. I have noted that one major concerns that residents have is that their application/response will somehow slip through the net. This is especially crucial with negative responses when they believe an application will have a serious impact on their quality of life.

Therefore, there is a tendency to check the planning portal once a submission has been made to ensure that it has been taken on board and not lost. Regrettably, the system displays in the bottom right hand corner:

"Data is updated daily at 2:30am"

Which is very misleading, and for the reasons described above causes distress when someone's response does not appear.

Can we either update the system more frequently, or have this text changed? I believe it would be very easy to do and would prevent a good number of bitten nails and ground teeth.
Lets hope we can get it changed. Incidentally, it's still branded MBC as well, although I'm not so bothered about that.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

In praise of the carrot

After blogging last week about carrier bags, I received a few responses by email.

The first was to tell me that I was behind the times, and that there had been this piece on the BBC website about how successful the reduction had been.

Curiously billed as a failure, because they were hoping to reduce usage by 50%, the Supermarkets had reduced usage by 48%. Apparently this extrapolates out to 346 million carrier bags per month that have been saved.

Which is amazing for one good reason: with the exception of a couple of smaller outlets, this has been done without a financial disincentive for using a disposable bag. I'm very impressed with what the sphere of social conscience can manage without government interference if it wants to.

This makes the final comment on the article slightly confusing:
As a result, some environmentalists are now calling for a charge of up to 15 pence for each disposable carrier bag.
Why?! If we can effect this kind of change without having to push it top down from the nanny state, doesn't it tell you that we don't need taxes to change behaviour?

The other email pointed out that I should be filling the charity bags with all my disused clothes etc. Of course, I know this, it's just that I only throw clothes away when they have holes in and my wife just doesn't allow me to buy enough clothes to keep spring cleaning*.

* All those who know me will know that's not true and that I'm a reluctant shopper - but I just couldn't help myself.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Macclesfield Express Classic

From the back of today's Macclesfield Express. Really made my day:


I got into an interesting debate with a nurse the other day about Tamiflu - the crux of which was about whether an individual can be prescribed the drug more than once.

This came about because of discussions about individuals attempting to mislead the flu advice line in order to get hold of Tamiflu when they didn't need it - and then perhaps taking it anyway thinking that it would prevent them from getting the flu. What would then happen if they then became properly infected at a later date?

Now I've been told off before about picking fights with people much cleverer and better educated than me, yet I'm still convinced that I'm right and the "one shot only" rumour is created by the NHS to stop people from doing what I've just described. As far as I can find out, there's nothing indicataed by Roche that prevents someone form undergoing two courses of the medication.

But I did find out something far more worrying.

All viruses develop immunity against the drugs that we create, but the flu virus is very good at doing this. According to wikipedia, when it came to Tamiflu:

In the 2007-2008 US flu season, resistance of influenza A(H1N1) was 12.3%, in preliminary data of 2008-2009 resistance reached 98.5%.

A very dramatic increase. If the same occurs with Swine Flu then it's likely Tamiflu will be completely redundant by the time the 2nd wave comes round in the winter.

This will leave us with Relenza as the other neuraminidase inhibition option. Unfortunately, Relenza is administered by inhaler and so is not as straightforward as Tamiflu.

I know we have some of this stockpiled already, but is it time to get ordering? GSK will be pleased.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Fiat & BSM

Just a quickie.

Fun story at the BBC that Fiat have scored a winning goal with BSM:


A great piece of marketing by a team that worked out that 70% of learners buy the same model of car that they learn in.

However, they've missed something rather vital. I can tell them for sure that 70% of learners do not buy a new model of that car*. Most will get one that's 5 years or more older - but it will be the same model.

Which is where it falls down for Fiat. Do they really think that learners in the new, cute, 500 are going to happy knocking about in an old Cinquecento when they've passed? I think not...

Thanks everyone

Thanks to all those who came along and supported our Curry night last night. We had an excellent meal and a good amount of money was raised...look out Macclesfield West, here we come!

Monday, 27 July 2009

Shame about the Weather

I know we all like to complain - but how much rain has there been over the last couple of weeks?

My newly landscaped flood-proof garden has flooded twice, although admittedly that's a huge improvement on what it was like before when the slightest shower would result in puddles lapping up the Conservatory door.

The real shame was the Peaks and Plains fun day and tug of war which was held at the Fermain youth centre on Sunday. For the 2nd week running I found myself sheltering in the Canalside boogie bus.

We were hoping it would be a good opportunity to do some more consulting on the playing fields, but regretably most of the time was spent huddling in a gazebo. The rain did ease off about half way through and the day looked almost pleasant at one point before it started throwing it down again.

Top marks to all the teams who took part. I was very impressed with the level of preparation and organisation especially with the association teams. Unfortunately it's a pastime that I don't really have the build for.

More roadworks updates....

Received this morning...

The gas renewal works are continuing around Macclesfield, particularly on Chester Road near Broken Cross and Park Lane. Next week the Chester Road works will be suspended and there will be a temporary 'one-way' order in place on Oxford Road at the roundabout at it's junction with Chester Road from Monday 3rd August for approximately 3 weeks. Traffic will not be able to enter Oxford Road from the Chester Road roundabout and will instead be diverted via Cumberland Street, Hibel Road, The Silk Road and Park Lane. Traffic travelling in the other direction will be able to exit Oxford Road at the roundabout onto Chester Road.

Whilst these restrictions will cause some disruption to traffic, this will allow most traffic to use the roundabout as normal. The alternative to closing the inbound lane into Oxford Road was to replace the roundabout with 4-way traffic signals which I believe would have caused more congestion and traffic problems than the proposed restrictions.

Please note that these restrictions will not occur until the current 4-way temporary traffic signals on Park Lane have been removed and reverted to 2-way signals further along Park Lane.

Further information about these works is available via telephone on 0800 121 4444 (FREE Customer Care Helpline).

I don't want to go over this again and again - but it won't be long till the press are complaining about roadworks throttling Cheshire.

Cheshire East do everything they can to mitigate the impact of essential roadworks. This again is shown here, with careful coordination of a large program of works that has an impact all over Macclesfield.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Swine Flu Latest

If you're interested in finding out the latest about Swine Flu, then pop along to the next meeting of the Health and Adult Social care cmmt, who are meeting on Wednesday 29th July at 10am in Sandbach.

The final item on the agenda is an update on Pandemic Flu from Fiona Field, Director of Governance and Strategic Planning at Central and Eastern Cheshire
Primary Care Trust.

Should be quite interesting - shame I can't make it as an observer.


Yesterday, I committed the ultimate social crime. I went to Sainsbury's without my reusable bags.

I could feel the eye daggers in my back as I carefully packed my goods into a disposable, landfill bound carrier. How many polar bears had I just killed? Would my neighbours ever speak to me again? Would it ruin my electoral chances for 2011?

It would be interesting to know how much usage of carrier bags has dropped. From what I see when I'm shopping, a good number of people now use reusable bags, and I don't doubt that it's a good thing.

But the real disappointment is that whilst the usage of non-biodegradable bags has dropped significantly - the number of non-biodegradable bags posted through my door by charities has increased exponentially.

I estimate that the number of these I throw away is far higher than the number of carriers we used to use. So all our hard work to save the planet is canceled out.

Now that is criminal.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Vodafone and the Flowerpot

I have blogged in the past about the Vodafone application to put a mobile phone mast on the flowerpot junction.

This was refused permission, but Vodafone chose to appeal the decision. Unfortunately for them, the appeal was dismissed.

Parking From Macclesfield Express

I've not tracked down a copy of today's paper yet, but I understand that I may have had the following column printed:

At the next council meeting we will debate a motion to suspend car parking charges on Saturdays.

As readers of my blog will know, I believe we need to reduce parking charges to boost our ailing town centre and get shoppers using local traders. Therefore it may confuse you when I say I don’t think this is the right move.

Without question the best stimulus would be to scrap charges completely. But this would see car parks filled by commuters and the loss in revenue would be unpalatable. Removing Saturday charges will still cost a significant amount and may not encourage a huge increase in trade. Crucially, it doesn’t help traders throughout the week. Therefore, I’m leaning towards a “free after 3” or “free at lunchtime” scheme.

To ascertain what system is best, we must consider why charges are a disincentive. It is not necessarily the cost, but the hassle of having the correct change, finding a machine and getting a ticket. All of us have found ourselves without change for the machine. For this reason I’m not too keen on the idea of a ticket refund scheme, although it’s another good option.

Dropping charges will result in hole in the budget that would probably be paid for by council tax, and it’s not fair that visitors to Cheshire East would get to park for free at the expensive of residents. So perhaps another idea would be for residents to buy parking permits that allow short term parking, in conjunction with a time disc to control length of stay. Tourists would continue to pay as normal.

We need action, but we shouldn’t rush into this. There are a number of options which we must balance against the financial implications. It should be a good debate.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Eric Pickles

On Monday night I had the honour of collecting our Party Chairman, Eric Pickles, from Macclesfield railway station to take him to a special meeting of the local Conservative Party.

The official press release I sent to the papers reads as follows:

It was standing room only on Monday night when the Chairman of the Conservative Party, Eric Pickles MP, paid a visit to the local party.

After arriving by train, Eric first met with association officers in the Conservative Office before addressing around 70 members gathered in the Conservative Club.

Pickles, who is Member of Parliament for Brentwood and Ongar, spoke about the upcoming parliamentary candidate selection to take place in Macclesfield. He outlined the different options available to the membership in Macclesfield, and mentioned that whilst there were already a good number of approved candidates several local people had recently applied to get onto the list.

When describing the selection process for the Conservative party, Eric mentioned the way the other parties select their candidates with little local involvement and said "They look at the way we do it and it makes them jealous".

After he discussed the possible process he took questions from the floor. Once the business of the selection had been dealt with he continued to answer questions on a range of political issues including Education, Europe, constitutional reform and local government.

Chairman of the local party, David Freear, said "Eric was very well received by the membership, who appreciated him taking the time to visit Macclesfield. We all enjoyed his down to earth personality and are looking forward to the selection process due to start in September".
One last thought - Eric bought with him his Chief of Staff. I was very dissapointed that this chap wasn't called Cheese, as they could have joined in with the Mitchell and Webb double acts:

Lucky 13

This ward number 13 business is really starting to get me down.

I twisted my ankle on Bond Street last night whilst out running - and as I fell nearly collided with two pedestrians.

Luckily I missed them, so they obviously don't live in ward 13.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Lucky for some, part 2?

After joking about my ward being numbered 13 last week, I proved that 13 is indeed unlucky by being struck on the head by a cricket ball whilst playing on Saturday. This left me with a lump all evening, a headache all weekend, and a graze for what looks to be like all week.

Just typical, when tonight I'm meeting the Chairman of the Party, Eric Pickles. You won't miss me Eric, I'm the chap that looks like he's just been in a fight.

I'd like to consider the whole episode attempted murder, but Dinesh is a good chap and the truth is that I wasn't paying sufficient attention. Perhaps that'll teach me.

The rest of the weekend was a lot better. The grand opening of the Toddlers play area was excellent. Superbly organised, lots of kids were in force, our new PCSO turned up, and we had no less than four Councillors in attendance.

The day was completed by music courtesy of the man himself, Nick Wright from Canalside FM (http://www.ccr-fm.co.uk). His presence was really appreciated and I'm delighted that he took the time to turn up with his boogie bus. As did most of the kids, who unsuprisingly kept requesting Micheal Jackson.

Unfortunately the day was rather cut short by the weather - although having the food and facepainting in the Community Centre meant it wasn't a complete washout. I managed to get out of doing any consultation on the playing fields. Not sure how I managed this, although perhaps they all felt sorry for me with my war wounds. I didn't see Marilyn without the clipboard in her hand once - top work.

Now it's time to read the agenda for the Council meeting in full. I've already commented on the boundary review, there's an interesting motion about town centre parking, and a few procedural matters. We'll also be voting on the coat of arms which I don't think has been changed since I posted about it here.


I've had a few comments left recently made by an individual who keeps posting similar comments under different pseudonyms.

My view is that if you're too much of a chicken to stand up under your own name and be counted then I'm not entirely sure I'm that interested in what you have to say. These types of comments will therefore have to be far more relevant to pass the vetting procedure - and the ones in question have been ditched.

To make the situation clearer, I've updated the comments policy. It can be found here.

Just to expand on comments a bit further...

This blog frequently attracts interest from childish people who have no interest in serious discussion about how this country could be made into a better place at a national and local level. Instead spend their time looking for any tiny item they can use to attack someone (anonymously, of course).

One feature of my personality, and by extension a feature of this blog, is that I'm not afraid to admit when I've got something wrong, or when there's something I don't know. For this reason, such individuals get frequently excited when I talk about a fact unbeknown to me. Their uncontrollable excitement erupts in a rash of comments about how unsuited I am to be a political representative because I don't know x, y or z. Indeed, the very fact that I will happily admit when I don't know something also apparently makes me untrustworthy - an entire concept which is oxymoronic.

If you're not this kind of person, then comment at will. I'd love to hear from you. You'll notice that the comments system has changed a little - and that's because the current system offered by blogger isn't that great. I'll be trialling the new system over the next few weeks to see how I get on with it.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Macclesfield Parking Review

Don't forget to complete the parking review if you want to have your say on residents parking.

The exhibition has been in the town hall all week, but if you can also get all the information online:

Friday, 17 July 2009


It was a very hot and humid night, and I was in Fina in town for the official launch of the Macclesfield Chamber of Trade. I happened to bump into Jane from the Loop, who had been tempting me with news of a cultural festival for Macclesfield.

I was very excited about this...many of us Maxonians are a bit touchy about "Culture" ever since the Times article (which was completely unfounded and a load of tripe). Then she told me it was going to be called Barnaby.

I may be showing my ignorance here, but I'd never heard of the name before. Jane explained the history behind it, much of which is covered here.

Jane's got some amazing ideas - including turning Woolworths into a beach (!). I dare say it will have to start small and build up to that, but it would be great if we can start a festival in Macclesfield that will grow over the years and prove that Macclesfield can be a draw to the cultural tourists.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Lucky for some

One of the items on the agenda for the next Council meeting is the Cheshire East proposal for boundary modifications for the next election.

The boundary review is being carried out by the Boundary Committee for the 2011 Elections and it's expected that these new boundaries will be kept for a significant period of time. Cheshire East can submit it's own recommendation, as can any organisation or individual, for consideration by the committee. Whilst it is expected that the committee will treat the Cheshire East submission as a significant input, they are under no obligation to implement what the Council request.

The basics are that the urban area of Macclesfield will remain as 3 member wards - four of them. The boundaries will be slightly modified to keep the number of electors in the ward correct. Therefore:

Macclesfield West - as now but without houses south of Ivy Lane, but gains some north of Chester Road.
Macclesfield South - The moss with Thornton square area
Macclesfield East - Town and Buxton road
Macclesfield North - Tytherington and Broken cross

The outskirts will see single member wards:
Sutton: Bosley, Wincle, Sutton, Rainow. (Think I would have called this Macc Forest)
Gawsworth: Gawsworth, Warren, Siddington, Henbury

Bollington will make up a 2 member ward, as will Poynton West, and Poynton East will be joined with Adlington and Kettleshume in a very perculiar shaped 2 member ward.

I'm sure there will be some interesting discussion about this. I've had plenty already with local members - and it's one of those situations where you will never make everyone happy.

The most worrying thing about this? We've been sent a map with the wards drawn on and number. Macclesfield West is number 13....

Friday, 10 July 2009

"Jointness" ?!

Time for a quick game of Balderdash.

Is "Jointness"...

1. A state a plumber reaches when he or she is in pipe connecting utopia.

2. A young girl called Vanessa who has a reputation for rolling cigarettes of questionable provenance.


3. A word, not in the Oxford dictionary, which has crept into the title for agenda item 13 on the next Cheshire East cabinet agenda.



The pain starts today...

It was only last week that I was suggesting that the roadworks in Macclesfield weren't as bad as Barlow was making out.

Today the gas renewals programme will be moving to Chester Road in Broken Cross and will be operating traffic control for the next couple of months. This is going to cause serious issues with traffic as we know from experience that blocking up Chester Road can have the effect of gridlocking all of Macclesfield.

Highways have sensibly insisted that the contractor employs manual control during peak periods to ensure the traffic flow is as managed as possible, but however good this is there will still be serious delays.

I will no doubt get angry letters about this, but what are the other options? This work must be done unless we would like national legislation that prevents the utility companies from running pipes under the road.

This work needs to be done and you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs. It's just a shame that the finished omelette is going to look exactly the same as the one we had before.

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Good, bad and Barnaby.

It's been a good day for me, as I've got my inbox down to 5 emails. The full task list is still a bit mammoth, but I'm hoping to crack that tomorrow.

Not so good for England who really could've done with 3 or 4 more wickets, but there's always tomorrow. Fear that rain will force a draw.

I'm off to West Park for a BBQ tonight, hopefully rain won't ruin that too.

Blogging has been light this week which is very disappointing - I'm desperate to wax lyrically about Arts in Macclesfield, what is a festival and what isn't, and Barnaby.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Curry Night - Support your local Councillors!

I’m holding a fundraising social event on the 27th July and I’d be delighted if you could come along and support your friendly local Councillor.

No expenses, gossip or sleaze here I’m afraid – just the boring matter of having to raise enough money to pay for my next round of leaflets. Communicating with the electorate is an expensive business and we have to find the money to do this ourselves.

It’s being held at the Balti Kitchen, Park Lane. The food there is excellent and we are booked to have a set meal of Poppadums and chutneys followed by Curry, Rice and Naan. Tickets are priced at £15 – a bargain considering the food on offer.

It will be a fun social event with no political boringness, there’s even rumours that there will be a raffle where you may be able to win {insert your own joke about duck islands, toilet brushes and bath plugs here}.

Tickets must be bought in advance, so drop me an email to darryl@darrylbeckford.co.uk or call me on 01625 421903 to secure yours now.

Thanks in advance for your support,


Barlow - The voice of (un)reason?

I know a couple of the readers of this blog are big Vic Barlow fans, and some even consider him to be the "voice of reason". (!)

But sometimes I wonder if he just jots down a few sentences before the print deadline without giving any thought or consideration to the content. My supposition is that some of his views are not very reasoned at all.

This is a great example from last weeks Macclesfield Express.

He doesn't get off to a good start with this:

"God knows what they talk about at council meetings?"

This, as regular readers will know, is like a red rag to a bull for me.

As meetings are minuted and open to the public, then he could find out if he wanted to. In fact, I've not seen a single professional journalist from the Maccelsfield Express (I assume he does receive a pay cheque? He may do it for the free doggie advertising...) at any of our meetings, so it's no surprise that they're in the dark when it comes to what was discussed.

Perhaps it's for this reason Vic isn't aware that Cheshire East is investing £330,000 to boost the local economy. Hardly what I'd call dragging my feet, but I suppose writing about that wouldn't be quite so pithy.

He complains about the roadworks - and whilst his literary illustrations are entertaining they're not quite true. We do have a lot of roadworks going on at the moment, but they're hardly choking the town centre. I also believe he knows full well that to prevent these roadworks would need a change in national policy that Cheshire East can't implement.

But in truth, it's the final comment which got me.

I’d expect to see sparks flying over the current state of our town centres.

His essentially suggestion is that none of us are voicing our concerns over the town centre - especially the transport / parking issue.

This is so untrue and uninformed that it's offensive. I appreciate that he may not know what every councillor is doing, but most people are aware of what I am working on because of this blog, twitter, and regular coverage I get in the paper he writes in.

Chamber of trade, local loyalty schemes, parking, art in shop windows, markets and litter. It's all been in there - and that's before we get onto the Town Centre redevelopment which has serious implications in the FOI act also. It's not just been "sparks" either - I've manged to create fire on several issues, although I accept that in the public sector it's rather slow burning.

So come on Vic, keep up with the times will you? Why don't you get yourself on Twitter and then you can keep yourself more up to date.

Monday, 6 July 2009

Childrens and Families

I'm a member of the Children's and Families scrutiny committee, and today was our latest meeting.

A lot of our time recently has been taking up with issues about "looked after children" - which means Children in Care. Essentially councils up and down the country are desperate to ensure that another Baby P doesn't happen, and this has been driven by a report by Lord Laming.

One intriguing thing I found out today was that the number of Children in care in Cheshire East increased from 308 in March 2008 to 348 in March 2009, an increase of 15%. This is quite an unexpected rise, possibly driven by social workers not wanting to take any risks.

Evidentially we'd prefer that there were no children in care at all, but then I'd rather they were in care than in danger and so it's difficult to feel concern about the increase in figures. I suppose the concern is that the Children were being looked after inappropriately in the first place and makes one wonder if we could have done anything to assist the parents before it got to this stage.

However the real problem is educational outcomes for these individuals. Of all the Children in care 15 took GCSE's last year, and only 2 passed 5 or more with A-C's. That's a serious concern to me.

Parking Review / Residents Parking

There is now a wealth of information about the Macclesfield Parking Review online here:


The questionnaire will also be available on this page from the 13th July.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

A bit late now...

...but I was intended on posting these a few weeks ago as a teaser before the toddlers play area opened. Unfortunately I forgot to download them from my phone.

So try and conjure up some level of anticipation as you remember what the play area looked like half way through construction:

Thursday, 2 July 2009


A very odd one this - as one of our officers not only has very poor photoshop skills, but they also haven't learnt the lessons of James Purnell.

I received a press release this week from our Council. It had this photo:

With the attached caption:
Photo Caption: Celebrating the launch of The Mayor’s Scholarship Fund are (left to right) Dennis Dunn, Dean of MMU Cheshire, Councillor Brian Silvester and Rob Allen, Director of Partnerships at Wulvern Housing.
Fine so far...or is it? The thing is, the photo doesn't really stand up to scrutiny.

Taking a look closer (click if you want to see it larger):

It's clear that the board that they are holding has been painted blue in photoshop (badly, they've missed bits and didn't blend around the fingers) and then they've typed some dead straight text onto a not so straight board.

The interesting questions is what did the board say before?

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

New Roads

Building roads is difficult. It's expensive, many will disagree with the environmental implications, and it takes a long time. However it has the power to transform places, especially where the economy is throttled by transport issues.

Personally, I love the idea of building a motorway through Congleton so that I could get to the M6 and therefore business meetings across the country quicker. Obviously that's never going to happen, but it's nice to dream.

A more sensible scheme is the SEMMS relief road (Poynton bypass). This concept has made some progress, but there's rumours that the Poynton section may not get built and with a cost in excess of £300m it's always going to be a slow process. If it does get built it will provide some excellent links for us when travelling north.

More recently a number of people have been talking about a more modest scheme in Macclesfield. This would be a road to link Congleton Road with London Road (essentially across Danes Moss-ish area). The idea of this is that it would relieve pressure on the Flowerpot Junction, Park Lane, etc and would form a direct and quicker route into and through town.

Sounds good in practice, but this could only be feasible if work was done on Mill Lane and I don't think it would be generally popular with residents down that end of town who would see an increase in traffic.

Other problems include the Moss being a SSSI (so I'm told, you wouldn't believe it looking at the state of some of it). The road could be routed over the landfill site once it is closed, and my friendly geo-technical engineer tells me that whilst this brings complications of it's own, it's not impossible.

The final barrier to cross would be the railway line. So for such a small road the costs are going to be high. Would it bring sufficient benefits?