My week: varied and challenging

police stationLast week a rather lengthy Development Control Meeting at the Town Hall began at 7pm with a discussion about change of use of a private house to one in which teenagers in care would be looked after.  “No, no, no,” shouted the local residents!!

My own business that evening didn’t come until 10.40 pm when I spoke about the proposed demolition of the old Beeston Police Station and the building of 24 apartments on the site.

I wrote a blog post about that long evening, but, unsaved, it disappeared into the ether. Instead, here are some snippets from this week: life in opposition.


  • a morning meeting to discuss the Oxjam Big Event at Bartons this Saturday. Present: police, fire service, environmental health team, the event manager, Mr Barton and me. The purpose to make sure the event was safe and would not distress local residents with its ‘noise’ during the night. Important for me to be there to represent residents.
  • evening: local Labour party branch meeting. Speaker on a new political party in Spain and a discussion on Council business.  Enjoyed it more than I thought I would.


  • morning meeting with Council solicitor to prepare for the Examination & Inquiry Group [EIG] meeting on Wednesday.  I need to be ready with my contribution.
  • chaired Dementia Friends’ meeting mid-morning at home. We discussed developments to Beeston Memory café for people with dementia.  Best committee I’ve ever worked with.
  • (phone rings, yet another planning matter: rings again, another planning call)
  • attended 3 evening meetings:
  • training session for councillors on ‘Universal Credit [UC]’ by DWP speaker. UC begins in Beeston on 2 November for those on Job-Seekers Allowance.  Nothing new for me here.
  • Community Police meeting to discuss current priorities (e.g. anti-social behaviour and speeding) with local residents and councillors. Useful so I popped in, but Cabinet meeting next door had greater priority.
  • Cabinet meeting where important political decisions are made. This included a decision on a joint planning application with Oxylane  and potential options for progressing part 2 of the Local Plan (site allocation). Very useful for me to sit in on this discussion on topics which come up again tomorrow.


  • Broxtowe Action Fund meeting to award £2,500-worth of grants to local community groups. Glad to be on the “giving side” for once.
  • Strategic Planning & Economic Development EIG. All about the core strategy and local neighbourhood plans. Interesting and complicated stuff.

Thursday evening: Councillors training on Safeguarding and members’ responsibilities. Could have been more interactive.

Friday: early ICT training session at the Town Hall.  Very helpful for those of us with little experience of computer use.

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