Pits n Pots https://pitsnpots.co.uk We keep you in touch with what matters most to you in Stoke-on-Trent Tue, 28 Nov 2017 15:11:49 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.1 We’re taking a break https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/08/were-taking-a-break/ Sun, 05 Aug 2012 05:43:29 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6555 Holiday season is here!

I’ll be taking a break from the site for my holidays and to do some real world work. Normal service will be resumed later in the year.

Readers View – Renovate Hanley instead of ripping it down https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/08/renovate-hanley-instead-of-ripping-it-down/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/08/renovate-hanley-instead-of-ripping-it-down/#comments Wed, 01 Aug 2012 08:12:33 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6550 Continue reading ]]> Hello Stoke-on-Trent City Council, why not look at ideas like this from Manchester for improving Hanley?


Why not ‘renovate’ some of the old buildings rather than pull them down to make way for some concrete and steel monstrosity?

Just a thought.

Mrs W – Stoke

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City Council to review City Centre night time economy https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/stoke-on-trent-city-council-to-review-city-centre-nighttime-economy/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/stoke-on-trent-city-council-to-review-city-centre-nighttime-economy/#comments Tue, 31 Jul 2012 08:05:05 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6546 Continue reading ]]> Stoke-on-Trent City Council Leader Mohammed Pervez has asked for a task and finish group to be set up which will tasked with carrying out what is being call a comprehensive review of the city centre’s night-time economy.

The task and finish group will be made up of a number of city councillors who will work with businesses, visitors and licensees. They will collect information on the current night time economy of the city centre and make recommendations for future improvement.

Councillor Pervez said

We want to ensure our city centre is a thriving and enjoyable place to visit, where people feel safe and where businesses prosper.  I am asking for a task and finish group which will see councillors scrutinise the night time economy and consult with a wide a range of people who use the city centre.

The group’s remit will be to gain a comprehensive understanding of the issues which affect the city centre and to look at ways we can encourage growth. We work very closely with colleagues in the police and other public services, and we also want to build on our close working relationships with businesses.

The task and finish group will examine alcohol-related crime, strengthening the safety of the night time environment in the city centre and supporting the council’s Mandate for Change pledge of encouraging the city’s economy to grow.

Latest statistics from the city’s Safer City Partnership show that alcohol-related crime is more of a concern in the city centre than elsewhere in Stoke-On-Trent, but the figure is coming down.

The number of alcohol-related violent crimes has fallen over the last 12 months. In 2010/11, there were 1,257 alcohol-related violent offences, in 2011/12 there were 830 – a fall of 34 per cent. The city centre accounted for a total of 500 offences over the two year-period, with 296 offences in 2010/11, and 204 in 2011/12.

The task and finish group will carry out the review over the next three months. They will report their findings and recommendations back to the city renewal overview and scrutiny panel and ultimately to the council’s cabinet. The results will be used to shape the way the council responds to the situation and works with partner agencies.

Councillor Matt Wilcox, who chairs the city renewal overview and scrutiny panel, said

We welcome this review and the opportunity to look in detail into the city centre’s night time economy. Over the last 10 years there has been a steady decline in the music and culture offer in the city centre at night, and as a result, the number of visitors has dwindled. We want to examine the reasons why this has happened, and to support the night time economy to thrive once more.

The council is committed to improving and investing in the city centre. The new bus station development will help to attract visitors, the proposals for the central business district will bring in more workers, and the new City Sentral development will bring in extra shoppers. All of this will also draw in many millions of pounds of investment.

This review is very timely in helping to ensure these very exciting developments are supported in the best possible way and that we, and all stakeholders in the city centre, are doing all we can to ensure the city centre thrives.

What do you think could be done to improve Hanley at night?

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EyeSpy The Future https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/eyespy-the-future/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/eyespy-the-future/#comments Mon, 30 Jul 2012 14:57:52 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6530 Continue reading ]]> While idly sitting at my desk and avoiding work EyeSpy came across this new product, just in time for Joy Garner if she gets voted in as Police and Crime Commissioner, but after last Thursdays results EyeSpy isn’t holding his breath.

Just unveiled in Japan at £637,000 each the Kuratas the a real life version of Omnicorps ED-209.

After watching this instruction video

Joy could jump in one and head up to Springfields and Trent Vale and point out the error of their ways not voting Labour. The robot has 2 gatling guns which can fire 6,000 rounds a minute and can be operated with by a smile.

The irony of operated by a smile and Joy Garner is not lost on EyeSpy.

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EyeSpy Oh how the mighty are fallen! https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/eyespy-oh-how-the-mighty-are-fallen/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/eyespy-oh-how-the-mighty-are-fallen/#comments Mon, 30 Jul 2012 07:52:40 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6518 Continue reading ]]> David Conway was not the only one with a big smile on his face Friday morning as Labour awoke to the short sharp judgement of the residents of Springfields and Trent Vale. Whilst it might not stop the move, the backlash against the move to the CBD was apparent, which raised the spirits of many council officers on Friday morning. Parking in Stoke may not be perfect, but the thought of a daily game of ‘musical parking spaces’ followed by a forced tutorial on how you should cycle to work rather than moan about paying £25 a year to spend 20 minutes looking for a parking spot before abandoning hope and parking in Tesco, is a step too far for some.

Of course, if you survive the journey to work, you will then have the pleasure of being turned out of your office at lunchtime with the instruction from the Labour leadership to ‘spend spend spend’ in the local shops. EyeSpy can see the Quartermasters Store doing a roaring trade already…

The loss of Springfields & Trent Vale to Labour was made even more painful by the fact they had spent the previous 4 weeks shouting about how it was a sure win and the other 8 candidates were all wasting their time. Or at least those who knew how to work the Twitter accounts the PR department had instructed them to get did. The Labour Party’s new ‘odd job’ man (rent a room, start fights on twitter, pretend you like your MP when we all know you don’t) did an entertaining job telling all the other parties just what Labour were up to and proving beyond all doubt that he has the political nous of a fly squashed on the front of Mark Meredith’s car.

Reading his tweets, you could be forgiven for thinking the Tories were the main threat here, which was probably why the fragrant Mrs Brown was apparently so smiley at the count. Nothing proves how effective you are than how much you get up Labour’s nose – and the recent outburst by ‘Labour Len’ (cough) in the comments on a Sentinel article that she wasn’t even mentioned in, will no doubt reassure her and her colleague Jack Brereton just how annoying the 2 young upstarts can be to Labour…

…Of course, Labour were robbed and need to refine their message, however having seen the small novel put out by the City Independents, EyeSpy wonders if Labour would be better rethinking their election strategy altogether. Allegedly turning up late to the count and missing a lot of the action, the hand on that tiller seems particularly weak, but then it is quite busy on parliamentary business in London (amazing how he fits in all those articles in the Observer, isn’t it?). For how long will a weekly article in the Sentinel keep the proletariat happy that their MP is amongst them and one of them, especially now his ‘right hand man’ has gone part time to further his own career? Perhaps Gary Elsby was right all along…?

Meanwhile, the City Independents will be hoping the new addition to their group lives up to her reputation as a big voice for her community. EyeSpy can see some worried faces already as the bombastic Jackie Barnes joins their number. Dave Conway will also be hoping that she proves slightly more dynamic than the other ‘community leaders’ in his group, such as Peter Hayward, who promised so much but seems to have been almost jettisoned since he showed his unwillingness at the Police Authority to support the 0% council tax increase. At least he has firebrand Terry Follows back to stir them up, after a year as Lord Mayor, though how comfortable Terry will be in the group remains to be seen. Once very much a pragmatic (read ‘disparate’) group, Conway still upholds that there is no Whip in the Indies, however makes it crystal clear what he thinks, unlike the slippery Brian Ward before him.

Talking of Police, EyeSpy wonders what the Conservative PCC candidate Matthew Ellis made of his recent trip to Stoke-on-Trent? Labour have been keen to portray the November election as a death match between ‘cool urbanite’ Joy Garner and an anonymous ‘country bumpkin’ Conservative from somewhere down south, however it seems nothing could be further from the truth as at least Matthew made it to Trent Vale, whereas Joy and her henchman/husband Martin kept well away. Could this be because one of M’Lord Tristram Hunt’s aides publicly came out against her in the Party ballot?

EyeSpy will of course be watching with interest.

Off now to check out those election expenses to see whether the ‘hard working candidate’ who had his leaflets delivered with those of the local takeaway declares it….

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City Independents take Springfields and Trent Vale from Labour https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/city-independents-take-springfields-and-trent-vale-from-labour/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/city-independents-take-springfields-and-trent-vale-from-labour/#comments Fri, 27 Jul 2012 06:19:10 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6513 Continue reading ]]> In a shock result which rendered the previously vociferous Labour Twitterati silent last night, City Independent candidate Jackie Barnes won the Springfields and Trent Vale by-election.

The seat formerly held by Sarah Hill until her resignation from the cabinet & the city council was thought to be a safe Labour seat.

The turn out was a disappointing 21.6%, rumour within the Civic Centre was that Labour had called the election to coincide with the start of the summer holiday period hoping that a reduced turn out would increase their share of the vote with support from the party faithful.

Lib Dem candidate Les Porch came third and Conservative candidate Harold Gregory came in a disappointing fourth. Michael Coleman of the BNP trailed in to 7 place behind Independent Gary Elsby.

Jackie Barnes increased her vote from 277 in 2011 to 370 while Labour lost over 50% of their vote with it dropping from 537 in 2011 to 245 last night.

The final count was:

  • Barnes (City Ind) 370 votes
  • Aumir (Lab) 245
  • Porch (Lib Dem) 152
  • Gregory (Cons) 109
  • Bednarski (UKIP) 105
  • Elsby (Ind) 36
  • Coleman (BNP) 27
  • Wright (TUSAC) 14
  • Leat (Dem Nat) 2

The council chamber is still a Labour majority with 33 seats, City Independents now have 8 seats, Conservatives 2 and 1 unaffiliated.

https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/city-independents-take-springfields-and-trent-vale-from-labour/feed/ 3 52.994278681939 -2.20842361450252.994278681939-2.208423614502
Stoke-on-Trent City Council awarded £50,000 by Technology Strategy Board https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/stoke-on-trent-city-council-awarded-50000-by-technology-strategy-board/ Thu, 26 Jul 2012 13:48:50 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6508 Continue reading ]]> Stoke-on-Trent City Council have been awarded £50,000 by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills sponsored Technology Strategy Board.

The award is for the council to carry out a feasibility study showing how they could integrate their transport, communications and other infrastructure to improve the local economy, increase quality of life and reduce impact on the environment.

On successful completion of the feasibility study Stoke-on-Trent City Council will also be able to submit a proposal for a large- scale ‘future cities demonstrator’, showing how the city’s multiple systems will be integrated and how challenges in the city will be addressed – and one successful city will be awarded £24m funding to implement their proposal.

Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, said

We planned originally to fund twenty feasibility studies but because of the number of high quality initial proposals received from councils across the whole country we decided to increase the funding available so that thirty studies could be carried out. The results will be made public and we look forward to seeing some exciting future city demonstrator proposals.

The feasibility study report, and proposal for a large scale demonstrator, must be submitted by the city council to the Technology Strategy Board by 14 November 2012. After assessment and interviews the winning proposal will be announced in January 2013.

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Eye Spy OmniCorp https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/eye-spy-omnicorp/ Mon, 23 Jul 2012 06:54:52 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6495 Continue reading ]]> Well we are in to the final week of campaigning for the much sought after seat of Springfields and Trent Vale, all the main parties have been up here pounding the streets over the past few days. Everything but the kitchen sink & PCC Candidate Joy Garner has been thrown at S&TV by Labour, even Council Leader ‘part time’ Pervez has been leafletting.

OmniCorp Logo

Eye Spy was particularly impressed with Coucillor Joy Garner last week and her likening everyones favourite security company G4S, to OmniCorp and going on record saying

The RoboCop films are an extreme example of where privatisation can go madly wrong. This just seems to be the first step.

This wasn’t a humorous aside, cracking a joke between a few mates over a glass of wine, no this was at a Q&A session with Ed Miliband last week in London. Michael Deacon in The Telegraph can do far more justice to Joy Garner & OmniCorp than Eye Spy ever could.

Personally Eye Spy will welcome our new OmniCorp robotic masters and can’t wait until we have a load of mindless drones patrolling & controlling our city..


Moving swiftly on. While checking E-mails I spotted this in the 500 words press release from BNP candidate and possible guest of HM Pleasure, Michael Coleman,

Michael Coleman 666

says it all really.

Back to the S&TV By-election, the Conservative PCC candidate Matthew Ellis was spotted on the doorstep with the Conservative candidate Harold Gregory on Saturday. From what Eye Spy has heard, the Conservatives are going down very well in the area but will it be enough to return Harold as a councillor to join the only two tories in the village? I hope so, they could start a Wilson, Keppel & Betty tribute act and liven up the full council meetings.

Eye Spy also noticed that the printing address for the Labour leaflets has changed, now that should make the election expenses interesting reading.

In other news, if you want a blue bin for recycling all the election leaflets, don’t bother asking, the rumour is the recycling scheme could be changing again..

52.995802655798 -2.209796905517652.995802655798-2.2097969055176
500 words from Gary Elsby Independent candidate for Springfields & Trent Vale https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/500-words-from-gary-elsby-independent-candidate-for-springfields-trent-vale/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/500-words-from-gary-elsby-independent-candidate-for-springfields-trent-vale/#comments Thu, 12 Jul 2012 18:31:43 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6485 Continue reading ]]> I have lived and worked the whole of my life in Stoke-on-Trent and hopefully, this gives me some knowledge and understanding of what is either right or wrong with the City. It is here, I choose to live, work, raise a family, run a business, serve 20 years as a school governor and pay my taxes.

Like every candidate in any election, I hope to win and serve to the best of my ability. What is certain is that I am a man of my word and when I say I will speak out, nothing will stop me.

My general concern for the City is the lack of consideration for the tax-payer by the political parties, whether they act alone or join in collaboration when cornered.

We have all witnessed the needs of an Elected Mayor to shove through his singular policy of vital service closure without any consideration of the facts; namely, Dimensions.

When analysed, the case disintegrates as they do so today. There is not a just economic or social cause to close a care home in this City.

To force through more service closure, Labour handed power to rival political parties with the promise of promotion for support.

Labour, Conservatives, City Independents (closet Tories) and Liberals all shared in the spoils of guilt and closure.

Today, Labour unashamedly closes care homes, day centres, parks, libraries; swimming pools etc. and not a peep of complaint comes out of its 34 Labour Councillors, with this year’s candidate offering a false promise to do so. She will remain quiet, fall into line or face the sack.

They have a plan of £100m worth of cuts, above and beyond accountancy mismanagement or austerity measures and politely call it, ‘mandate for change’.

The Party I once belonged to had principles of vital service delivery and it was an honour to be a part of it. Today the message from Glebe Street is that we: “Don’t have to deliver those services”.

It’s what Labour’s traditional defeated enemies have always said.

That is the difference between Labour then and Labour now. They don’t know how to change without unnecessary cuts and public high interest loans.

Two years into their current term, we now have conclusive proof that Labour doesn’t represent the working classes of Stoke-on-Trent anymore. Gone is one hundred years hard earned trust and this is why everyone in the City wants a vote in this election.

This Labour Council has no backbone and little experience of proper leadership in social debates. They think it is normal to offload caring vital services into an inferior private sector, with brand Labour winning an election as proof of cause. It’s not it is an abuse of the privilege of power in a natural Labour territory.

So who will speak out convincingly after this election; Labour, its collaborators of closure or Gary Elsby with an ‘independence of mind with a strong social conscience’?

If the electorate of Springfields and Trent Vale want to correct the score on behalf of everyone in Stoke, then send me into Glebe Street.

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500 words from Mubsira Aumir Labour candidate for Springfields & Trent Vale https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/500-words-from-mubsira-aumir-labour-candidate-for-springfields-trent-vale/ https://pitsnpots.co.uk/2012/07/500-words-from-mubsira-aumir-labour-candidate-for-springfields-trent-vale/#comments Tue, 10 Jul 2012 14:23:32 +0000 http://www.pitsnpots.co.uk/?p=6479 Continue reading ]]> Mubsira AumirIt is a privilege to be selected as Labour’s candidate for Springfields and Trent Vale ward for the City Council by-election on Thursday 26th July.

If I am elected, I will stand up for the local community and be their strong local voice in the Council Chamber. The things that are a nuisance to residents are important issues to me, whether they are the cracked paving stones on Kensington Road, or the potholes on Collin Road. I firmly believe in starting as I mean to go on. The Labour campaign team and I are on people’s doorsteps listening to residents’ concerns and tackling their problems.

I have been active in trade unions and labour movement politics since I was a teenager. I am a governor at both Kingsland Primary and Kingsland Nursery Schools. I have three children and have volunteered at the Thomas Boughey Children’s Centre. I also work with women who have suffered domestic violence, offering support and helping them escape abusive relationships. As a socialist, I believe we have a duty to help others less fortunate than ourselves, and it is because of my values that I am a member of the Labour Party.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council has been hit very hard by the Tory-led government. This has forced the council to make savings of over £50m to manage their budgets and stimulate growth in the city. It is very likely the city can expect further cuts this year in the guise of devolving more powers from government to local authorities. The government’s so called austerity measures are not working in terms of the predicted growth and stability yet we are now hearing from senior figures in government that the austerity measures will continue for a number of years. The need for us to continue to protect the most vulnerable in our communities will become even more paramount. This is the daunting challenge facing the city, and I firmly believe Labour is the only party capable of meeting it.

That is why the council has embarked on its ‘Mandate for Change’ programme. Our City centre is currently under performing and we need to breathe new life into it to make our city a success story. By becoming anchor tenants in the new Central Business District, your Labour council will boost private sector confidence and create thousands of high quality jobs.

I know many people in Springfields and Trent Vale make the short trip to Stoke to shop. I will work hard to ensure it does not become a ghost town, and that customers from new businesses and new homes will replace relocated council workers.

I believe this by-election is important because it is about the kind of city we want. People voting Labour will be supporting a plan for jobs, growth, and protected local services.

Ultimately, what matters is the candidate and their ability to work in a team to pull our city through these difficult times, not their post code.

If you live in Springfields and Trent Vale, I hope I can count on your vote on Thursday 26th July.

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