Sunday, November 16, 2008

We wish you a noisy Christmas!

How would you fancy living next to a noisy party all over Xmas?
Well that is what could face residents in part of Fishponds Road. The White Lion pub has applied for extensions to 04:00 am on the four Saturday/Sundays before Xmas, and every night from Xmas Day to Sunday December 28th. I have asked the Police to object to the application, and the licensing panel will make a decision at a hearing on Thursday.
(After discussions between the Police and the publican agreement was reached to reduce the four days of extended opening over Xmas to three. They have also agreed to keep noise down to reasonable limits, and to keep the doors shut. The Police have now withdrawn their objection).

Eastville Park tree destruction

Last Sunday local residents were horrified to hear workmen removing trees behind the old swimming pool in Eastville Park. The land is privately owned but has been home to badger setts for many years. The trees appear to have been hacked down rather than felled, and are still lying on the ground.
Council officers have now slapped an emergency Tree Preservation Order on the remaining trees, this is too late to save the wood as it was, but that should offer some protection against further destruction. Some lessons appear to have been learnt from the Grove Wood case. Local residents will be watching for any signs of trees being removed or disturbance to wildlife.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Obama's historic victory

I was one of many millions watching the TV anxiously in the early hours of Wednesday morning for the American election results. With my remote control flicking between the BBC and CNN coverage, I followed every projection and prediction. It soon became clear that after eight dismal years with one of the worst Presidents in their history, the American people had voted by a clear margin for ‘change they could believe in’.

It was so good to feel positive about a US election, especially after the depressing experience of seeing Bush just cling on in 2004. I really hope Barack uses the next two years to bring real change, he has a Democratic majority in both houses of Congress, so there is no reason not too.

In Britain we voted for change in 1997, and the Labour Government seemed to promise so much, but wasted a golden opportunity and in the end changed so little. I really think Obama has the potential to make the world a more peaceful place and drive action on climate change, lets hope he lives up to it.

Grove Wood celebration

On Tuesday I joined local residents at a small celebration of the Grove Wood campaign in the Masons Arms at Stapleton. Last week the Council’s planning committee for this area agreed to place Tree Preservation Orders on the trees in the wood. From now on any pruning work the owner of the land wants to do will have to be approved in advance. This is a victory for common sense at last after many months of campaigning. The campaign to save the wood is far from over, but this is an important first step.