Stoke-on-Trent To Be Split In Boundary Shifts

Parts of Stoke-on-Trent could be merged with Newcastle-under-Lyme under government proposals change parliamentary boundary.

The review, an outcome of the 2010 election seeks to cut down the total number of MPs in the country and make more balanced constituencies.

New constituencies must be within 5% difference of the average voting population split across the constituencies, i.e. between72,810 and 80,473.

In North Staffordshire, Stoke will be losing it’s exclusive trio of city constituencies, and Staffordshire will lose one MP as constituencies are morphed together.
In the overhaul, the existing South constituency will adopt parts of Stoke and Trent Vale.

The Stoke Central constituency will include various new wards from the existing North constituency which is where the biggest changes are felt.

Tunstall, Chell and Packmoor and Burslem North will be merged with 12 Kidsgrove and Newcastle wards, in the cross-town Kidsgrove&Tunstall constituency.

The immediate reaction is that Stoke residents will be 1/5th of a constituency and so in effect won’t be voting for their City MP.

The boundary proposals are now open for discussion and for the next 12 weeks, the Boundary Commission will be accepting comments, complaints and suggestions about their proposals.

Although these merges wouldn’t directly affect council elections and services, there is a fear that Newcastle/Kidsgrove/Stoke-on-Trent could be losing their historic identities.

In a recent lecture, former Elected Mayor, Mike Wolfe said that a merge made financial sense and that it was the obvious thing to do.

Across the country, both Prime Minister David Cameron’s and Leader of the Opposition Ed Milliband’s constituencues will remain unchanged ““ 2 of only 77 MPs whose boundaries remain.

Nick Clegg’s constituency will be changed, however.

With a reduction of 50 MPs across the country, inner-party squabbling is expected to break out as politicians scramble for seats.

Below is a list of the proposed new parliamentary wards for Stoke-on-Trent.

Kidsgrove and Tunstall 75,352
Audley and Bignall End Newcastle-under-Lyme 4,694
Bradwell Newcastle-under-Lyme 4,970
Butt Lane Newcastle-under-Lyme 4,349
Chesterton Newcastle-under-Lyme 5,475
Halmerend Newcastle-under-Lyme 3,038
Holditch Newcastle-under-Lyme 3,366
Kidsgrove Newcastle-under-Lyme 5,255
Madeley Newcastle-under-Lyme 3,419
Newchapel Newcastle-under-Lyme 2,801
Porthill Newcastle-under-Lyme 3,229
Ravenscliffe Newcastle-under-Lyme 3,372
Talke Newcastle-under-Lyme 3,206
Burslem North Stoke-on-Trent 9,131
Chell and Packmoor Stoke-on-Trent 9,211
Tunstall Stoke-on-Trent 9,836

Stoke-on-Trent Central BC 79,980
Abbey Green Stoke-on-Trent 8,962
Bentilee and Townsend Stoke-on-Trent 9,008
Berryhill and Hanley East Stoke-on-Trent 7,71 7
Burslem South Stoke-on-Trent 8,730
East Valley Stoke-on-Trent 10,226
Hanley West and Shelton Stoke-on-Trent 8,434
Hartshill and Penkhull Stoke-on-Trent 9,045
Northwood and Birches Head Stoke-on-Trent 8,949
Norton and Bradeley Stoke-on-Trent 8,909

Stoke-on-Trent South 78,283
Blurton Stoke-on-Trent 9,550
Fenton Stoke-on-Trent 9,225
Longton North Stoke-on-Trent 10,660
Longton South Stoke-on-Trent 10,274
Meir Park and Sandon Stoke-on-Trent 10,082
Stoke and Trent Vale Stoke-on-Trent 9,659
Trentham and Hanford Stoke-on-Trent 9,769
Weston and Meir North Stoke-on-Trent 9,064

6 Towns Radio interviews City Councillors

Burslem based 6 Towns Radio are going to be broadcasting interviews with the 44 City Councillors giving you the chance to hear from the representative of your ward on their plans for the term of their office, the issues they are currently dealing with in your area and any of their ideas and aspirations.

Cllr Andy Platt, was the first one to step in to the studio and you can hear his interview below.

Already lined up for interviews are

  • Cllr. Alan Dutton (Burslem Central) – Friday 9th September @ 12.30pm
  • Cllr. Mark Meredith (Birches Head and Central Forest Park) – Tuesday 13th September @ 1.30pm
  • Cllr. Kath Banks (Hollybush and Longton West) – Tuesday 13th September @ 2.15pm
  • Cllr. Andy Lilley (Baddeley, Milton and Norton) – Tuesday 20th September @ 1.30pm

Each week Tuesdays editions of Talk Of The Towns 1pm to 3pm and Fridays editions of The Mid Morning Show 10am to 1pm will feature live studio chats and interviews with as many of the 44 of the councillors for the area that can be arranged over the coming months.

Reinventing Stoke-on-Trent

Last night saw the newly refurbished Mitchell Arts Centre packed out with people from all over North of Staffordshire, residents, business people, community groups, activists, local politicians and the media for a evening lecture given the former Mayor, Mike Wolfe.

Mike gave his vision of a united city based around ‘Stanley Square’, names after one of the city’s most famous sons, with Stoke-on-Trent is one City, not 6 towns which he refused to name during the lecture.

Matt from My Tunstall has done a long article on the lecture which you can read by following the link below.

Should we lose the identity of our six towns and just become Stoke-on-Trent?

Digital Switchover Starts Tomorrow

From 6am Wednesday 7th September 2011, you must to a perform a first time installation retune (sometimes Factory Reset or Shipping Condition) on your Freeview box or television set if you use the Fenton transmitter.

If you don’t perform a retune you will lose BBC2.

This is because the old multiplex 1 BBC service will be replaced by the BBCA multiplex on the old analogue BBC TWO frequency.

On Wednesday 21 September 2011 will see the second stage of switchover, which provides the final Freeview configuration, including Freeview HD for Fenton transmitter.

Free Electric Blanket Testing

Stoke-on-Trent residents are being urged to make sure their electric blanket is safe to use this autumn and winter by bringing it to a free testing session.

Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service annually carry out one of the largest testing programmes in the country.

Any blankets that fail the testing will be disposed of but anyone over 60 and living in Staffordshire will be offered a brand new single or double under-blanket as a replacement.

Testing will take place at the following venues

  • Thursday 6 October ““ Sandyford Community Fire Station, Marlborough Road, Off Reginald Mitchell Way, Stoke-on-Trent ST6 5NZ between 10am and 12:30pm, and 2pm and 4pm.
  • Friday 7 October ““ Hanley Community Fire Station, Lower Bethesda Street, Hanley ST1 3RP between 10am and 12:30pm, and 2pm and 4pm.

Alternatively, people can take their blankets to a drop off point at Longton Market on Friday 30 September between 10am and 4pm and collect them on Friday 14 October between 10am and 4pm.

Nationally, thousands of electric blankets are found to be faulty which could lead to a fire, so ensuring yours is safe is really important. We find that a lot of people fold up their electric blankets when they’re not in use, however this damages the internal wiring, making them dangerous.

We will be doing the testing throughout September and early October as people generally start pulling out their blankets towards the end of September, once the temperatures start to drop and the nights start drawing in.

If you are unable to take your blanket to any of these venues or if you want to make enquiries about electric blanket testing, please contact the Fire Service on 0800 0241 999

National Deaf Children’s Society Responds to Stoke-on-Trent City Councils U-Turn On Educational Services For Deaf Children

NDCS is pleased that as a result of our High Court legal action Stoke City Council is reconsidering its proposed decision to cut vital educational services for deaf children. However, we are very disappointed that it has taken them this long: months of discussion, a Freedom of Information request and a High Court action, to bring about this U-turn.

The battle is not over yet as Stoke City Council is not reversing their previous decision to cut three Teachers of the Deaf. Parents continue to believe that the service needs to be improved and we will be supporting parents to ensure that their concerns are heard.
NDCS and the council are currently in the process of agreeing a court order which will quash the council’s decision and ensure that, if the council propose more changes, they must do so by a proper legal process which will involve consulting NDCS and others.

Parents who are concerned about the support their child is getting can contact the NDCS Freephone helpline on 0808 800 8880, email or visit the website using the link below.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council CCTV Car Spotted Flouting Parking Rules

Stoke-on-Trent City Council CCTV car has again been spotted parking illegally while carrying out enforcement operations.

The car which has previously been reported on the My Tunstall website for being spotted parked on double yellow lines in Hanley was seen parked in a clearly marked loading bay on Huntbach Street near to the Potteries Shopping centre on Saturday.

A specific bay, bounded by white markings and signed to permit loading and unloading by goods vehicles. Parking is not permitted within these bays.

The vehicle as far as we are aware has no special status to allow it to contravene parking regulations, although it is unlikely that it will ever be reported for parking illegally as parking enforcement is carried out by the City Council who are unlikely to report themselves for breaking parking regulations & law.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council to reconsider deaf teaching decisions

Stoke-on-Trent City Council has today (Friday) announced it will reconsider its decisions on savings to the way services are delivered to teach deaf children.

The move comes after the authority’s full council had agreed to save £187,000 from the special needs service in February, as part of £36million spending cuts imposed on the council by the government.

The saving was part of a raft of unprecedented budget reductions the council was forced to make to meet the spending restrictions.

The National Deaf Children’s Society had challenged the council’s decisions in the High Court to cut one teacher of the deaf post, and a decision on whether or not to grant a judicial review of the savings would be due on 12 September.

This year’s budget was the toughest the council has ever had to deliver, and the authority was forced to face an unprecedented level of savings.

This meant that the council had to go back to the drawing board and look fundamentally at the way it delivers all services across the authority.

The decision was taken at full council to support proposals to make savings in the provision of services for deaf children. Like with all the spending cuts, this was a very difficult decision to take.

But the welfare and education of all the city’s children is, and always will be, very important. We have listened to the arguments made by the National Deaf Children’s Society, and we have listened to parents, children and teachers.

In light of this, it has been agreed that the original decisions be reviewed, following proper and meaningful consultation, to help us to continue to provide the best level of services for city children.

The council is also mindful that the legal challenge could prove costly; this is taxpayers’ money which could much more productively be spent delivering public services than being eaten up in the law courts.