Dogs on Metrolink – What do you think?

On Friday members of the Transport for Greater Manchester Authority will be meeting to consider a consultation that T4GM has undertaken on the issue of dogs on trams. At present only assistant dogs are allowed (hearing and sight dogs).

The consultation with the public and Metrolink Users found that 71% of people were in favour of allowing dogs on trams, some of whom felt that there should be some sort of restrictions (e.g. child ticket, off peak).

Metrolink is extremely unusual in NOT allowing dogs on board. Dogs are free to travel on buses in Greater Manchester, are free to travel on trains across the country. Even in urban areas dogs can travel on the London Underground and on the Tyne and Wear Metro. The Croydon Tramlink, which is an almost identical system to Metrolink with similar two-carriage trams, allows dogs on board.

But the recommendation from Transport Officers is that dogs should continue to be banned from all Metrolink trams – on the grounds of health and safety.

dog-on-bus

Many people would probably find it sensible that there would be sensible rules and restrictions. Other transport systems obviously require dogs to be on a lead, not on seats, and well behaved. Given how busy Metrolink is in the rush-hour, it might even be sensible to restrict dogs to off-peak hours.

It does seem strange to us that Transport for Greater Manchester thinks that dogs are unsafe on trams, but no problem on it’s buses and trains. Other cities happily allow dogs on board, but not Manchester.

What do you think?

Short Stay Parking to Start on Clifton Road

Clifton Road car park in Prestwich will become a short-stay car park on Monday 13 July as previously reported.

Parking will be free of charge, but restricted to a maximum of two hours, between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Saturday (except Bank Holidays).

Bury Council has taken the move, following consultation with residents and local businesses, to help shoppers who have struggled to find a parking space.

Notices are now going up on site informing drivers of the upcoming changes.

Please note – drivers will need to obtain and display a free ticket from the machine which is being installed at the entrance of the car park. This is so that the two-hour limit on parking can be enforced.

We’ve been calling for short-stay-only parking in the village centre for three years now, and would also like the Council to look at making some of the parking on the ‘eastern side’ of Bury New Road (e.g. the Longfield or Fairfax Road) short stay to allow people to easily use show and local facilities.

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Short Stay Parking Bays in action in Cheadle, Stockport

Walking Rainbow returns 12 July 2015

Bury’s ‘Walking Rainbow’ event returns on Sunday 12 July 2015.

The event, now a regular part of the calendar in Bury, is a walk organised by young people to celebrate diversity, promote equality and say no to homophobia.

The walk takes place on Sunday 12 July 2015, meet at 12.30 at Bury Town Hall, then walk half a mile to Kay Gardens where there will be information stalls, speeches, music and ‘fun’!

More information from Tony or Lisa on 0161 253 5663.

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Heaton Park RBS Closuring – Sign the Petition!

Thank you for everyone who has supported the campaign so far to keep the Royal Bank of Scotland on Bury Old Road in Prestwich – the last bank on the Bury Old Road side of Prestwich and the only free cash machine anywhere near Heaton Park.

The branch is threatened with closure this summer. If you can please sign the online petition at www.loveprestwich.co.uk or sign in person in the Fresh Cookie sandwich shop on St Margaret’s Road.

We’ve made this short video to highlight the problems from the bank closure.

Screenshot 2015-06-24 09.21.20

Play areas – 1 Refurbishment, 1 Decommissioning

Two pieces of good news for Holyrood Ward on Children’s Play areas.

The children’s play area on Heaton Street/Recreation Street (normally called the Bailey Street play area) is to be refurbished during the current financial year (2015-16). I know a number of residents have been in touch about some of the equipment and surfaces needing replacement, so this is really good news.

We are very keen to work with the Council and with  local residents and people who use the play area to make sure that the play area is what we need and want for the local area so please do get in touch if you have ideas about the area.

The ‘older children’s play area’ on St Joseph’s Fields (off Sandgate Road) is to be decommissioned. As a bit of background this was a facility that was opened (roughly 2010) following some money from the then Government. It was always a really bad site for the area (behind Prestwich Heys) which meant that it was unlit and away from the road so I think many people feel that this has become unsafe, unsightly and to be honest not much use to anyone. Our understanding is that this is going to be restored to being part of the field as before.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have queries or comments on these.

Metrolink Update: St Peter’s Square closed for 14 months

Another set of works on Metrolink start this weekend with St Peter’s Square station closed for 14 months.

The works are part of the Second City Crossing project to build a second line from Victoria to St Peter’s Square down Cross Street.

This work will require a closure of the stop to passengers and changes to services running through St Peter’s Square for a period of approximately 14 months while a new station is built.

Artist's impression of St Peter's Square stop

Artist’s impression of St Peter’s Square stop

Changes to Metrolink services will take place in 3 phases –

Phase 1 (28 June 2015 for eight weeks) No services will run through St Peter’s Square. For customers travelling on the Altrincham, Manchester Airport, East Didsbury, Eccles and MediaCityUK lines, the newly refurbished Deansgate-Castlefield stop will offer the best city centre stop. Services on all other lines will run into Piccadilly. Replacement bus services will offer connections from one side of the city to the other.

Phase 2 (late August for ten months)
The St Peter’s Square stop will remain closed but trams will continue to run through the city on a temporary single line.

Phase 3 (final eight weeks)
The same as Phase 1 – no services will run through the St Peter’s Square stop as work finishes to open the new-look stop to passengers.

There is more detailed information, including news about the shuttle bus that will link the two sides of the city here.

Children’s Centres in Prestwich lose Midwife Services

Many users of our remaining children’s centres in Prestwich are angry as midwifery services ended at the start of this month.

Breastfeeding, antenatal and parent education services have been withdrawn from Butterstile and Sedgley children’s centres in Prestwich. Toodle Hill Children’s Centre on Cuckoo Lane was closed for all services by the Council at the end of May.

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Butterstile Children’s Centre – (c) M.E.N.

Bury Council, which had previously allowed the midwife services to run at the centres without charging the Hospital Trust to pay rent, now they are being asked to pay £5,000 if they want to provide midwifery services at at Butterstile and Sedgley Park children’s centres.

Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust refused and has moved community midwives services to GP surgeries – and and for one clinic to North Manchester General Hospital.Bolton NHS Trust, which provides the midwife services in most of the rest of Bury IS willing to pay a charge, so their services will be continuing in Children’s Centres.

We feel this is a real shame. Running midwife services at Children’s Centres is a great way to get mums to be to come into the centres and see what other help and advice might be available. Particular for some parts of Prestwich GP services are not so easy to access (e.g. if you live in southern Prestwich and the GP practice is at the Longfield), especially now we have the much reduced bus service.

We understand that the Council and NHS Trust are still discussing the issue, but it seems that, for the sake of £5,000 for the Council, Prestwich mums have lost their Children’s Centre midwife services.

Work Starts on Central Heating at some Six Town Housing Flats

Work is taking place at some Six Town Housing owned flats between 15 June 2015 and 10 July 2015.

This is work being undertaken by a private contractor installing gas combi-condensing boilers, radiators and associated pipe work (where required).

The work is taking place at certain flats at:

Rooden Court (Park Street)
Newtown Court (Newtown Street)
Wilton Court (Simister)

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you require any further information.

Mary

Carers Week 2015 8-14 June

This week is Carers Week 2015 (8-14 June 2015).

Carers Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK.

This year Carers Week is focusing on building Carer Friendly Communities. Communities which support carers to look after their loved ones well, while recognising that they are individuals with needs of their own.

CarersWeek

 

The local Lib Dem team here in Bury have signed up and pledged to take action on carers as part of carers week 2015.

There is more information about events in our local area at the Bury Directory here (search for Carers Week).

You can download free Carers Week resources, including the Carers Week Guide (full of tips and ideas), logos, school resources and social media content. You can access these resources here: http://www.carersweek.org/get-involved/resources-for-signups

RBS St Margaret’s Closure – Sign the Petition

Thank you for all your feedback about the proposed closure of our only bank branch here in Holyrood Ward – the Royal Bank of Scotland on the corner of St Margaret’s Road and Bury Old Road.

A petition has been set up for people to register their opposition. This is in the Fresh Cookie on the corner of St Margaret’s Road (opening times – 8.30 – 2.30/3.00pm friday, 9.00 – 1.30 Saturdays)

Please do pop in to sign if you can.

People have raised the very valid point about the availability of cash machines, particularly free-to-use cash machines in the Heaton Park area.

With the closure of the bank there won’t be any free cash machines anywhere near to Heaton Park, which is obviously a very large visitor attraction. There is a free-to-use cash machine at the Tesco Metro on the Polefield ‘parade’, and then nothing until the Shell garage in near the end of King’s Road in Sedgley. There are also a lot of businesses in these areas (small shops, pubs, betting shops) that are largely ‘cash’ businesses.