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Wokingham Lib Dem Councillors force review of Evening and Sunday car park charges

Liberal Democrat councillors in Wokingham have forced a review of a  Conservative decision to introduce charges in council car parks for parking  in the evenings and on Sundays.   The Conservative Executive  took the decision on 31st March, against opposition from the public.

The Liberal Democrats have submitted a formal notice requiring Wokingham  Borough’s Overview & Scrutiny committee to hold an inquiry into the  decision.  They want a review because of significant concerns about the way in which the Executive decision was reached.   The recommendations coming  out of the review will be sent to the Executive for them to consider before  they retake the decision.  The charges cannot be introduced until after the  review has taken place.

Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats, Councillor Lindsay Ferris, was the  first to sign the notice.  He says “The idea of charging for parking  overnight and on Sundays came out of the blue.  We don’t know what led to it  being proposed.  We haven’t seen any detailed evidence to support the claim  that it can raise £150,000 a year.  And there is no analysis of the  different parking needs in different parts of the Borough or the impact that  charging will have on the different local areas.  It is just not good  enough.”

Councillor Tom McCann agrees.  He says “The decision the Executive took on  31st March will allow them to bring in evening and Sunday parking charges in  all the council car parks, including in Woodley, which is my area.  But  earlier on in the meeting the Conservatives had said they were going to add  10p an hour to daytime parking charges in Woodley instead of introducing  evening and Sunday charging.  I don’t know why they decided to treat Woodley differently.  I know even less about why, having said they were going to  treat  Woodley differently, they then voted to treat it the same as everywhere else. It’s a complete shambles!”

Rachelle Shepherd-DuBey, councillor for Winnersh added “The Lib Dems have  been calling for a comprehensive parking plan for the Borough for about 2  years.  Instead we get a proposal to introduce evening and Sunday parking  charges that doesn’t even take into consideration the emergency changes to  parking that are going on in Wokingham town right now!  This is not a  sensible way to do things.”

The Liberal Democrats will continue to argue for a parking strategy for the  whole Borough which covers both car parks and on-street parking.

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Lib Dems Support Woodley Residents calls to bring back our No 19 Bus

no19At last night’s Wokingham Borough Council meeting, Cllr Kay Gilder (South Lake ward) handed in a petition of close to 500 signatures calling for the number 19 bus to be re-routed to Fairwater Drive and Nightingale Road in Woodley.

Cllr Kay Gilder said “since the number 19 bus has stopped calling at Fairwater Drive and Nightingale Road in Woodley, residents from South Lake have lost their only direct route to both the Royal Berkshire Hospital and our local GP Surgeries.

Elderly and less mobile residents have to make other arrangements to get to essential medical appointments and this is causing considerable distress, inconvenience and in some cases financial hardship. In one case the cost of alternative journeys for a resident has come to £40 in just one week! It is great that voluntary groups can help our less mobile residents get around, but these community services are under great pressure to cope with the increasing numbers of people needing help.

This petition shows how strongly local residents feel about the withdrawal of the bus service and together with residents, Woodley’s Lib Dems are calling on Wokingham Borough Council to do all it can to help us get this vital service restored.

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South Lake Lib Dem Campaign at last Successful

9297379127_f40c0c0550_zLiberal Democrat councillor for South Lake ward, Kay Gilder, is pleased that her ongoing campaign to stop Wokingham Borough Council neglecting South Lake, and her calls for the Council to stop the stink coming from the lake is at last paying off for local residents.

Cllr Kay Gilder said “I have been pushing the Council to stop neglecting South Lake and sort out the smell for well over a year now. Finally it seems the Conservatives have realised I am not going to give up on my residents and I am pleased that work to clean up the lake and stop the smell is now starting. Last night at the council meeting I finally got a commitment that work is taking place to clear vegetation from the lake and agreement that in future the council will properly monitor the lake to stop the stink. This is the very least local residents deserve.”

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Published by Woodley & Whitegates Liberal Democrats, 26 Farriers Close Woodley, Reading RG5 3DD.

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