• Feb 24, 2021:
    • Crime figures in Shawbury Division

      Local campaigner and Shawbury parish councillor, Adrian Brown, has published his latest analysis of the crime figures for each parish in Shawbury Division. This is his third batch of reports and completes the year.

      Shawbury Crime Figures

      Hadnall Crime Figures

      Grinshill Crime Figures

      Clive Crime Figures

      What is your experience of crime by you?

      Tell us about your experience of crime and policing. We have been campaigning for more hobbies on the beat for decades and will continue to push for more visible policing.

      The post Crime figures in Shawbury Division appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Feb 23, 2021:
    • Sign petition to reopen Baschurch Station

      Local Lib Dem campaigner, Robert Jones has launched a petition to get Baschurch Station reopened.

      Robert said: "Baschurch is a growing community. Growth brings a greater need for more and better connections with the world."

      "A new railway station in Baschurch could bring tremendous benefit to everyone in the area."

      Benefits:

      πŸš— reducing traffic locally and north of Shrewsbury;
      πŸƒ cutting air pollution;
      πŸš‰ better accessibility to and from our communities;
      πŸ‘©β€πŸ’Ό creating and enhancing economic opportunities;
      🌍 helping to fight climate change.

      Baschurch is on the Shrewsbury-Chester line, which also serves Gobowen (with access to Oswestry and the Orthopaedic Hospital) and Wrexham, and direct trains through to Birmingham International ✈.

      The original station was closed in the 1960s after serving our communities for 112 years. Reopening the station has been proposed several times in the past, but this time it's different. Baschurch and nearby communities have grown considerably since the last study was conducted 14 years ago.

      Today more government funding πŸ’· is available for reopening closed train stations and lines, but so far the Council has done nothing to secure that funding, despite the overwhelming benefits for our communities and further afield.

      If we want our station to open again, we need to make our voices heard! πŸ“’πŸ’ͺπŸ—³

      The post Sign petition to reopen Baschurch Station appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Feb 12, 2021:
  • Feb 9, 2021:
    • Calls for action on offensive waste left on bypass
      Just some of the rubbish collected by volunteers, including Nick Saxby, last year from the bypass verges

      Nick Saxby, a local environmental campaigner, has written to local authorities, in a call to tackle the waste accumulating around Whitchurch's bypass.

      Nick has been volunteering with a group of activists who have been clearing up the A41 around Whitchurch.

      He explains: "The project started thanks to activists in Whitchurch's 'Our House' group. I was invited along to help out with the cleaning, and was shocked at how bad it was".

      "There essentially is a landfill site in orbit around Whitchurch!".

      The volunteers, calling themselves 'The Whitchurch Ringroad Gardening Club', have retrieved approximately 2 tonnes of waste in a stretch of the road between Tarporley Road and Belton Farm.

      The volunteers have since been forced to stop their work as a result of the covid measures, but are keen to finish the final stretches when it is appropriate to do so.

      Nick comments: "The bypass is a gateway into our town, and people pulling over as they pass us by might be getting a horrible impression".

      "The debris goes deep into the soil and vegetation, so it's been accumulating for a long time. After it's been deep cleaned, hopefully it's an easier job to keep it tidy with surface cleaning".

      However, Nick and the volunteers are particularly upset about some of the things they've found.

      "The most shocking thing we've come across, is the huge number of bottles full or urine! Appallingly, we've found more than one tupperware box of poo as well!".

      "It would seem that lorry drivers are using the laybys of the A41 as stopovers, and leaving both the packaging from their meals, and ultimately, the meals themselves!".

      Long haul lorry drivers leaving waste on the roadside has been covered in the news elsewhere in the country, particularly near ports.

      The Whitchurch bypass forms part of routes for drivers heading North/South through the midlands, particularly for connecting to ferries across the Irish Sea.

      Nick has written to Shropshire Council and is hoping to hear from the Council's portfolio holder for highways about what actions can be taken.

      "I am hoping that the Council and local community can work together on a way to improve the situation. Whitchurch deserves better than having this sort of offensive waste being left around it".

      "Of course, lorry drivers need to rest and relieve themselves, but there are rest stops not too far from the town. At the very least; perhaps drivers just need to be signposted to more appropriate places to stop".

      Nick is also working with the new 'Restoring Shropshire's Verges Project' (RSVP), which hopes to increase the amount of wildflower habitats on roadsides across the county.

      He says: "If we have any hope of turning roadsides into useful places for nature, getting them cleaned up is a place to start".

      The post Calls for action on offensive waste left on bypass appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Jan 23, 2021:
    • Only 49% of over 80's vaccinated in Shropshire

      North Shropshire Liberal Democrats have reacted with dismay to the revelation that Shropshire is England's worst-performing county for vaccine roll-out.

      The group have launched a petition to Nadhim Zahawi, the Minister in charge of the vaccination programme, to demand that Shropshire residents are given fair access to the vaccine.

      This follows a report by the BBC that only 49% of over 80's have been given the vaccine in Shropshire, compared to 76% in neighbouring Hereford and Worcester. There is currently only one vaccination site in North Shropshire, at the Orthopaedic Robert Jones Agnes Hunt by Oswestry, and this is far from accessible from other parts of the county.

      Liberal Democrat spokesperson Helen Morgan said "Time and again Shropshire is left behind the rest of England. That's why local Liberal Democrats have launched this petition to Nadhim Zahawi - we're determined to fight for a fair deal for our local communities, and for fair access to the vaccine programme".

      Helen campaigning in 2019

      The post Only 49% of over 80's vaccinated in Shropshire appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Jan 21, 2021:
    • Shropshire Council closes the door on Whitchurch pool petition

      A petition for Shropshire Council to examine the possibility of opening Whitchurch Swimming Centre was discussed yesterday in a scrutiny committee. The scrutiny committee dismissed the petition but gave very few details about any positive actions being taken to get the pool reopened.

      The petition, signed by 441 people, was launched by Whitchurch Liberal Democrat campaigner Nick Saxby, who was frustrated by the apparent lack of action taken by the Council to make the pool over the past several months.

      "I was happy to hear the committee discuss the issue of Whitchurch Swimming Centre", said Mr Saxby, "but it was just more of the same lines we've heard, and no real response to the specific things that the petition raised".

      Cllr Picton, portfolio holder for Shropshire's leisure services, responded in writing.

      "We completely understand the frustrations of the local community. We are frustrated too as we understand the importance to the users of the facility with regards to physical and mental health".

      She added that "detailed risk assessments" have been carried out and it was felt that it was not feasible to open the pool in line with social distancing measures.

      One of Whitchurch's councillors, Cllr Mullock added: "The reception area, the changing rooms, and the passage ways are just too small". She stated: "It's just not feasible".

      However, Mr Saxby was not satisfied: "We keep hearing about it being impossible, but no details are ever given about exactly what the obstacles are, or what actions have been explored and discounted".

      "Councillors did a bit of speculating and sharing their thoughts, but what I wanted, and what I think people deserve, is detail".

      "My frustration, is that the Council and its partners have had since last March to try and troubleshoot this issue, so using the current escalation of the covid crisis as an excuse just doesn't wash".

      "There was a lot of exchanges of praise between councillors, for their hard work on this issue, but not a lot of detail about what that hard work consisted of".

      Cllr Roger Evans also spoke in favour of taking more proactive steps: "Surely we should be investigating methods".

      "We can do all sorts, if there is an effort to be put in. I'm asking, has it been investigated, and I'm being told, no it hasn't really".

      "Easiest thing in the world is to say no: Let's see how we can make it happen; that's a lot harder".

      The chair of the committee, Cllr Wild, concluded the discussions by saying "I'm not going to do anything with this petition now", before moving on to the next topic.

      Mr Saxby shared his thoughts about the conclusion:

      "It's worth clarifying that this petition was submitted before the current lockdown measures were put in place. Since submission, circumstances have changed, and I wouldn't expect the pool to be opening now anyway. But, there are still a lot of unanswered questions about what has been happening over the past year regarding the pool".

      "Cllr Evans put forward an interesting idea, of attaching a marquee to the building to expand it; whether it was feasible or not, it was nice to hear a councillor actually attempting to try and find solutions".

      "Ultimately, the pool is going to have to stay closed for now, but I don't think that absolves Shropshire Council of their responsibility to be engaged with the people of Whitchurch".

      If you haven't signed the petition but still want to, you can here:
      Whitchurch Swimming Pool Petition

      The post Shropshire Council closes the door on Whitchurch pool petition appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Nov 11, 2020:
    • Shropshire Party PPC joins Liberal Democrats

      Robert Jones, who was the Shropshire Party Candidate in North Shropshire at the last General Election, has joined the Liberal Democrats and will be standing for them at the local elections next May in Ruyton-XI-Towns & Baschurch division. This news is a significant boost to the Liberal Democrats who have ambitions to take control of the Authority next May. The Liberal Democrats are the main opposition party on Shropshire Council.

      Robert said: "I want to stand up for, and represent my local community, to help hold the Tory council to account, and to work towards improving the lives of residents and communities across Shropshire.

      "I feel particularly strongly about devolving power, empowering local communities and getting their voice heard. Standing for the Liberal Democrats is the best way to achieve that."

      Robert was born and bred in Baschurch and works in agriculture, specifically free-range poultry and egg production.

      Helen Morgan welcoming Robert Jones to the Liberal Democrats in a socially distant way in Ruyton-XI-Towns
      Helen Morgan welcoming Robert Jones to the Liberal Democrats in a socially distant way in Ruyton-XI-Towns

      Helen Morgan welcomed Robert Jones to the Liberal Democrats in a socially distant way in Ruyton-XI-Towns.

      Helen Morgan, who was the Liberal Democrat candidate at the last General Election, said: "The election next May will be hugely important. Residents will have an obvious choice, the incompetent and wasteful Conservatives or the Liberal Democrats who will fight for Shropshire and represent the only choice for change.

      "Robert has a lot to offer the residents of Ruyton-XI-Towns & Baschurch. He is an excellent addition to our growing team. More importantly, he will be a first-class advocate for his community at Shirehall."

      Helen Morgan will also be standing for Shropshire Council next May in The Meres division. The Liberal Democrats will be building upon recent growth and fielding many more candidates in North Shropshire than they have for many years. They are optimistic about retaking previously held seats and making new gains

      Robert concluded: "I can't wait to get to work, win this election and then deliver for the residents of Ruyton & Baschurch division and for Shropshire."

      Former Shropshire Party PPC, Robert Jones, has joined the Liberal Democrats and will be standing for them next May in Ruyton & Baschurch Division
      Former Shropshire Party PPC, Robert Jones, has joined the Liberal Democrats and will be standing for them next May in Ruyton & Baschurch Division

      If you agree with Robert and think #ShropshireDeservesBetter than the Conservatives why not join us in fighting for Shropshire.

      The post Shropshire Party PPC joins Liberal Democrats appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

    • More effort needed to open Whitchurch's swimming pool

      Nick Saxby, a resident of Whitchurch and local Liberal Democrat campaigner, put questions to Shropshire Council's cabinet on Monday this week, over the ongoing closure of the town's swimming public swimming pool.

      Mr Saxby had mixed feelings about the response given by Lezley Piction, the councillor with responsibility for Shropshire's leisure provisions: "I listened to Councillor Picton's responses yesterday, and was pleased to hear that the Council is committed to the reopening of the swimming centre. However, the spirit of my questions was the get more information about what has been done so far, but there was little detail on this".

      Mr Saxby had asked for the findings of any feasibility studies on reopening plans to be released, but the councillor stated that no feasibility studies, as such, were carried out. Mr Saxby commented: "They may not have undertaken 'studies' exactly, but Shropshire Community Leisure Trust has previously said "extensive investigations into the feasibility of reopening" took place. I heard nothing specific form the councillor other than restatements that it was impossible to open the centre".

      "Councillor Picton made it very clear that the building is not a covid-secure environment, but this is not news. We have known, and accepted this, since the beginning of lockdown. What the people of Whitchurch want, is to know exactly why/how. If we know what the issues are, we can work on problem-solving for them".

      As has already been reported, Councillor Picton revealed that an additional issue has arisen; a leak in the pool which will contribute to it remaining closed. "The revelation that there is a new problem; a leak in the pool; is a worry, but I welcome news that the Council is working to address this. I hope that they will apply the same effort to addressing the other issues", said Mr Saxby on this issue.

      Mr Saxby has been discussing the pool closure with other residents in Whitchurch, as commented: "There is overwhelming desire from people to get the pool open again. People have come forward offering help and advice, and even offers to raise funds if necessary".

      "Councillor Picton said that the Council now has a month to investigate options for the centre: What are they going to be doing in that month that they haven't done in the past eight? Simply stating that resolving this issue is 'impossible' with no explanation, or opportunity for the community to collaborate and engage, isn't good enough" says Mr Saxby.

      "Councillor Picton suggested that I might want the centre to reopen at the expense of the safety of residents, visitors and staff. However, the opposite is true; I want to work on making the centre a safe place for the community. A place where people in Whitchurch can engage in activities which enhance their wellbeing, without compromising their health".

      Read more: Leak discovery further delayed pool opening

      The post More effort needed to open Whitchurch's swimming pool appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Nov 5, 2020:
    • Owen Paterson has thrown British farmers on the scrapheap, Lib Dems warn

      The Liberal Democrats have warned Owen Paterson should "hang his head in shame" for voting against measures to protect high environmental and animal welfare standards.

      Conservative MPs rejected amendments to the Agriculture Bill which would have forced the UK Government to ensure that British food and animal welfare standards are maintained in any trade deals.

      Owen Paterson failed to back these measures, despite over a million people signing an NFU petition calling for the UK Government to put laws in place that prevent imports of food that is produced in ways that are illegal here in the UK, and a well supported local on-line petition.

      The Liberal Democrats have committed to continuing the fight to protect British farmers, including exploring further amendments to the Trade Bill.

      Helen Morgan reacted angrily to the news that Owen Paterson MP hadn't voted to support British Farmers. Helen is pictured supporting Helen supporting rare-breed farming in 2019
      Helen Morgan reacted angrily to the news that Owen Paterson MP hadn't voted to support British Farmers.

      Liberal Democrat spokesperson Helen Morgan added:

      "The Conservatives promised to protect British farmers, but they have betrayed that promise.

      "We now risk seeing foods that are currently illegal in the UK - like hormone treated beef, and fruit and vegetables produced using banned pesticide - making it onto our supermarket shelves.

      "Owen Paterson should hang his head in shame. Despite the constraints of lockdown, North Shropshire Liberal Democrats were able to deliver a well supported on-line petition to him, highlighting the concerns of local residents about farming and food standards. He ignored them. He has let everyone across North Shropshire down by putting Boris Johnson's government first.

      Liberal Democrat Rural Affairs Spokesperson Tim Farron said:

      "Unlike the Conservatives, Liberal Democrats back British farming. We want the Government to work in partnership with UK farmers to protect our world class food and animal welfare standards, cut greenhouse gas emissions and support the recovery of our natural environment.

      "We will do everything we can to continue the fight to protect British farmers, including exploring further amendments to the Trade Bill."

      The post Owen Paterson has thrown British farmers on the scrapheap, Lib Dems warn appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.

  • Nov 2, 2020:
    • Owen Paterson must use last chance to back farmers

      The North Shropshire Liberal Democrats have called on Owen Paterson to back British farming this week, and vote to protect our high environmental and animal welfare standards.

      In a letter to Owen Paterson, Helen Morgan, Liberal Democrat spokesperson for North Shropshire, warned the Tories must not "risk farmers' livelihoods to win a favourable trade deal from the USA."

      The votes come on Wednesday 04/11/2020 in amendments to the Agriculture Bill. The Liberal Democrats want MPs to ensure any post-Brexit trade deals meet UK animal welfare and food safety rules.

      According to the NFU, over a million people have also signed their petition calling for the UK Government to put laws in place that prevent imports of food that is produced in ways that are illegal here in the UK.

      Liberal Democrat Rural Affairs Spokesperson Tim Farron said:

      "Farmers across the country are incredibly worried that the UK is about to be flooded with poor quality food undercutting their high quality produce.

      "It doesn't need to be this way. Liberal Democrats back British farming and want to work in partnership with our farmers to help cut greenhouse gas emissions, support the recovery of our natural environment all while continuing to produce the food that fills our cupboards."

      Liberal Democrat spokesperson for North Shropshire, Helen Morgan added:

      "The Conservatives must not risk farmers' livelihoods to win a favourable trade deal from the USA.

      "If Owen Paterson is to truly back British farmers, he must vote to ensure any post-Brexit trade deals meet UK animal welfare and food safety rules."

      Please sign our petition calling for Owen Paterson to back British farmers, food producers and local jobs.

      The post Owen Paterson must use last chance to back farmers appeared first on North Shropshire Liberal Democrats.