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Councillor Wallace - Developments!

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On 20th February at our Local Area Council meeting, representatives from ARCH gave a positive and optimistic progress report on the Market Place development.  The presentation included an up to date timescale with the construction phase beginning in August and completion towards the end of 2019.  We were also given a firm indication of the major retailers involved in the project.  More information is available from Wednesday, 21st February at  http://www.investinginbedlington.co.uk.

Like many, I have expressed concern over the timescale of the project.  However it is important to realise that in the current economic climate retailers will only invest where and when they certain the conditions are right for them to do so.  I am aware that this has involved the ARCH team in hard and protracted negotiations in order to get to this point.

Councillors Bill Crosby, Malcolm Robinson and I are in regular contact with both NCC and ARCH over the development. We will  keep Bedlingtonians up to date with progress.

Monday, 19th February saw NCC begin their traffic survey on the roads feeding into the Red Lion roundabout.  The results of the survey will enable NCC to review ways of reducing congestion at the roundabout.  Although it is naïve to expect the daily school run queues to disappear, £20k has been allocated from next year’s Local Traffic Plan fund to support improvements to the traffic flow at the roundabout – a very welcome and much needed investment for Bedlington.

Apparently there has been some local confusion regarding the Member’s Small Schemes Fund. This is a £15k per year allowance which “County Councillors can use to fund local projects in their area”.  For openness and clarity, to date I have spent the following:

  • contribution to accessible footpath at Bedlington War Memorial            £2022
  • planters on Front Street, Bedlington (joint funded with WBTC                 £1000
  • contribution to a Yurt at Stead Lane Primary School                                  £2000
  • a CCTV system at Whitley Memorial School                                                  £1445

In the pipeline is support for:

  • the installation of drop kerbs on Front Street East
  • traffic improvements at the Red Lion roundabout
  • the refurbishment of the dining area at West End First School

Cllr Bill Crosby and I jointly supported the purchase of a Yurt at Stead Lane Primary School.  We will be supporting a similar development at Whitley Memorial School later this year.  With this exception, all spending falls within the Bedlington Central Ward.

Potholes continue to cause concern in the town and beyond – over 8000 were reported across Northumberland in the first three weeks of January alone!  Hoßwever NCC have now employed four additional teams in order to deal with the backlog as quickly as possible. Please go to http://mapreport.northumberland.gov.uk/ where you can report both potholes and street lighting faults, or let me know at the email address below.

My surgeries are held at Bedlington Community Centre at 6.30 pm on the first Thursday of the month, with the next surgery on 1 March. You can also contact me on 07779 983775 or at russ.wallace@northumberland.gov.uk. If I can be of any assistance please do not hesitate to contact me.

Thank you for reading.



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20 hours ago, rosco said:

Whats the betting Ashington will have this completed before our Market Place is started


Entirely possible, but that's a private venture, is it not?


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