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County Councillor Report (Oct-Nov 2018)

County Councillor Report

Oct-Nov 2018

by Wendy Pattison

wendy.pattison@northumberland.gov.uk – Tel. 07779 983072

County Councillor Wendy Pattison Northumberland

HEDGELEY PARISH

Road Resurfacing in Powburn

A697 road resurfacing at Powburn

Section of A697 resurfacing on approach to Powburn Village

Part of the road just outside, and also the mid­­­­­-section, of Powburn Village has now been resurfaced. I am delighted this work has been completed and I look forward to many more areas of the road network within the Parish being repaired/resurfaced.

Eglingham Parish Wind Farm Monies

The adjacent Longhoughton Ward Parishes which lie near to the Parish of Eglingham and those parishes in particular which look directly across to the wind turbines and which are hugely dominant against the skyline, thought that, after 3 years total exclusivity to Eglingham Parish, the Middlemoor wind farm monies would be made available to adjacent Parishes to apply for and to assist with local community projects. This appears to be not quite as straight forward as first thought and I have received several queries from outside of Eglingham Parish asking for more information in regard to the terms and conditions. The Fund was reviewed after 3 years exclusivity to Eglingham Parish and was extended out to groups from adjacent communities as long as the activities that were being proposed were of benefit to Eglingham residents. The fund criteria, Innogy Renewables UK Ltd, Middlemoor Windfarm Community Benefit Fund at the Community Foundation will receive £81,000 per year (index linked for 25 years from its inception in 2014) for payment of community grants to voluntary/community groups, charitable organisations and grants to individual people. The fund year is from October to September. Groups can apply for a minimum of £250 up to £81,000. Individuals can apply for a minimum of £250 up to a maximum of £2,000, subject to periodic review.

Who can apply?

Individual residents within the parish of Eglingham; constituted Voluntary Community Groups and Charities based within the Parish of Eglingham; Consideration will also be given to constituted voluntary community groups and charities which operate outside the Parish, if, they can demonstrate that a project will benefit people living within the Parish of Eglingham. Any enquiries on this, please contact 0191 2220945 for further information.

Green Dog Walking Campaign

I attach for your information, a breakdown of the Green Dog Walker Scheme membership by area. The figures provided are up until July 2018 so there may now be further additions to the numbers provided.

AREA BREAKDOWN OF REGISTERED GREEN DOG WALKERS NORTH, SOUTH, WEST, and CENTRAL NORTHUMBERLAND

Alnwick 58 Acklington 2 Acomb 8 Heddon 15 Alwinton 1 Amble 44 Allendale 3 Hepscott 3 Bamburgh 1 Ashington 160 Bardon Mill 2 Longframlington 5 Belford 9 Bedlington 72 Barrasford 1 Longhorsley 3 Berwick 15 Blyth 259 Corbridge 5 Mitford 1 Cornhill 1 Cambois 10 Elsdon 1 Morpeth 79 Denwick 2 Choppington 23 Fourstones 2 Ponteland 1 Doxford 1 Cramlington 134 Gunnerton 1 Stamfordham 1 Embleton 7 Cresswell 1 Haltwhistle 6 Stannington 6 Ford 1 East Sleekburn 3 Henshaw 2 Swarland 5 Lesbury 5 Ellington 7 Hexham 47 Whalton 3 Longhoughton 1 Guide Post 2 High Mickley 1 Millfield 1 Hadston 7 Juniper 1 Newton on the Moor 1 High Hauxley 3 Otterburn 1 Rothbury 5 Holywell 5 Ovingham 2 Scremerston 3 Linton 4 Ovington 1 Seahouses 5 Low Hauxley 4 Prudhoe 46 Sharperton 1 Lynemouth 15 Riding Mill 1 Shilbottle 28 New Hartley 4 Stocksfield 7 Spittal 4 Newbiggin 58 Throckley 1 Thropton 1 North Broomhill 5 Wall 2 Tweedmouth 9 Red Row 3 Wark 1 Warkworth 7 Seaton Delaval 48 West Woodburn 2 Whitfield 2 Seaton Sluice 9 Wylam 4

The Duchess Community High School

I had the pleasure recently of looking around the now fully completed Duchess High School in the company of Head Teacher, Maurice Hall and County Councillor Guy Renner Thompson. The High School has had what can only be described as an ‘interesting’ year in terms of change and I was impressed with the design and the layout of the school. The school extension is now complete, the mobile classrooms have gone and the school is now ready to look forward to a great future for all of our children.

New plans to improve parking in and around Alnmouth Station

Plans have been announced for the next stage of measures to improve parking at Alnmouth Station and Hipsburn.
The success of the station, which has seen a significant increase in passenger numbers of over 20% in the past five years to 312,000 in 2016/17 has been welcomed by the County Council.

The station provides an increasingly important transport link for people in North Northumberland who commute for work and the increase also highlights the growing appeal of the area for tourists and visitors.
However, this success has created growing parking issues at the station and the neighbouring village of Hipsburn, with residents’ drives being blocked, access difficulties for bus operators and some people leaving cars at the council owned station car park for weeks on end.

The council has now reviewed and considered the feedback from the consultation exercise, which generated around 100 responses and two petitions.

Feedback showed there was currently a lack of support for the introduction of the proposed residents permit parking scheme, so it has been decided that this will not be progressed.

However, it has been agreed to implement new parking restrictions in the form of single yellow lines in Hipsburn that will restrict on-street parking from 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday. It will be possible to park on single yellow lines outside these times, and the revised scheme aims to ensure that access is maintained for buses and emergency vehicles.

Parking charges will also be introduced in the council-owned station car park. However, in response to feedback that the proposed £3 per day charge was too high, it will be reduced to £1.50 per day and the Council has already brought in a maximum 72 hour stay restriction in its car park to prevent people leaving cars parked for weeks on end.

Any residual income from the car park will protect County Council frontline services and help fund future investment in transport connections and parking provision at the station.

The county council will also offer funding towards helping the parish council produce a parking master plan for the area.

County Councillor Glen Sanderson, Cabinet member for Environment and Local Services, said: “Our aim has always been to ensure any scheme works for both residents and travellers and I’d like to thank everyone who took the time to visit the public exhibition and who responded to the consultation exercise.

“We feel these solutions have taken on-board the feedback. People can be assured we will monitor and review the effectiveness of these changes, including a formal review after 12 months that will include asking people’s opinions again, to help us ensure that we can move forward together to minimise the problems being caused by the success of the station in attracting more rail users.”

“The charges are necessary, but not punitive and there will be a review of all measures in 12 months.”

Northumberland welcomed over 10 million visitors in 2017!

The annual North East report on the economic impact of tourism has been released, revealing that Northumberland welcomed 10.3 million visitors during 2017, a 6% increase on 2016.

The research conducted by Newcastle-Gateshead initiative shows that the visitor economy in Northumberland is continuing to grow year on year.
The report has also revealed that the amount spent by visitors is up 6% on 2016 at £924.84 million.

Jude Leitch, Director at Northumberland Tourism said: “Given that tourism is so important to Northumberland, supporting nearly 15,000 jobs, this growth is very good news. Confidence amongst our businesses is high and we are seeing a lot of private investment in new attractions, accommodation and restaurants.

“Our ongoing challenge is to ensure that this level of growth is managed sustainably, so as to protect our beautiful landscapes and our way of life. We are working closely with Northumberland County Council towards this aim.”
Cath Homer, Northumberland County Council’s Portfolio Holder for Culture, Arts, Leisure and Tourism said: “Tourism is a major economic driver in our county employing thousands of people, and I’m absolutely delighted to see continued growth in our figures year on year.

“This growth is testament to the hard work and sterling efforts of all our tourist attractions, hotels, restaurants and shops, who have all contributed to these positive results.

“However, there is more we can do to improve our tourism offer to keep it fresh and dynamic. We plan to build on our credentials as a destination of choice, and really start to punch above our weight. To do this we need diversify our offer to make sure it’s what people want, and importantly, come back time and time again.”

Promising figures were also released around the food & drink industry in Northumberland, stating that the sector now accounts for 36% of all visitor expenditure and 31% of all employment.
To read the full report please visit the Northumberland Tourism website: www.northumberlandtourism.org.uk

Notes

All text and images provided by Cllr. Wendy Pattison and used with permission.

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