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Featherstone Regeneration

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Author Topic: Featherstone Regeneration  (Read 5590 times)
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« Reply #40 on: July 29, 2018, 06:15:39 pm »

Diary update for July 27th
After considering the events of today it appears that WMDC do not have to talk to anyone if they choose and because of this the Local Government Ombudsman is now overwhelmed with similar complaints. As the Local Government Ombudsman cannot reply in its designated time period then it now looks like the next department is Central Government to ask for help?

WMDC visit today: The missing WMDC man called Jim appeared at my shop about 11am today to deliver the letter you see below. Jim would not talk in the shop and asked to stand outside in the street covered by CCTV. An un-official conversation was held.  Again, I now have 2 different versions of a conversation written and now write what is fact and not withheld as a gentlemanís agreement.

He informed me that our agreement had been broken by people at WMDC and that WMDC had now changed their mind. There would be no Yorkshire stone brought to make repairs.

WMDC on Monday 30.07.18 are now going install temporary traffic lights for as long as it takes to do the work. This could be for up to 4 weeks. The temporary traffic lights will be left up all day so that the night work can continue. I pointed out that previous work was only 2.5 hours per night for 2 days and 5 days of traffic lights at a huge local financial cost to locals. No confirmation could be given of how many weeks the temporary traffic lights would operate for.

When it was pointed out that the notice letter he was giving to me from WMDC was only giving 1.5 days working notice and was un-reasonable notice the reply was that this is what he had been told to do. In fact, WMDC had intended to post the letters so they would arrive on Monday 30th but Jim had taken the job on as it was apparently him who was going to get it in the neck to try and sort the mess out.

The explanation of the proposed works was beyond belief! Apparently WMDC have now changed their minds again and they are now going to remove all the Yorkshire Stone except for one small area. This will require disrupting what has all ready been done and then laying tarmac on soft ground. Not only has WMDC changed it mind about the Yorkshire stone but Jim had been given the job of asking each shop to leave its shutter up until 11.30pm each night so workmen could steel their property, land and rights. When some shops asked to talk to who was in charge they got the same answer which was call WMDC if you have a complaint. As WMDC refuse to talk who will cover insurance considering you cannot hang a St George flag in the street without it getting ripped down? What was definitely clear was that 4 weeks ago when the traffic lights were last in action and many complaints were made yet again something hit a nerve with one of the new contacts copied on to emails.

Bizarrely also the new plan is to dig up the good side of the street first before fixing the mess that has all ready been made. They are not going to finish the path they have started and are going to continue to leave it in a dangerous condition. When questioned why a 6-month project that should take 3 months and started 3 years ago was still not finished a gentlemanís answer was agreed.

Ok so man to man can I or anyone meet with who is in charge? The reply was I have been told do this job. Jim pointed out the back of the letter and the 2 names and phone numbers printed. One name was Jimís. As he could not reply he suggested calling the other. This had been called and message left with no reply. Jim told me that if I had a concern I should contact the council. I informed him again that I had but had been informed if I tried to communicate on the subject again I would get a 12 month ban from communication to WMDC. Jim asked who had informed me of such and I replied again that the contact was Mr Dickenson at WMDC. Jim could not understand why Mr Dickenson and not WMDC highways had been dealing with this. In the last 3 years there had been a number of people loosing / being moved from jobs while on this job.

Interestingly due to our conversation fly tipping was mentioned on the street. I pointed out this was no longer a criminal offence and the police no longer give out crime numbers for it when reported. Jim disagreed strongly. I informed him of the Post Office Road fly tippers dumping 7.5 tonne per load for months and the police response. Jim made a call to persons I do not know who said WMDC would prosecute whatever.

To end the conversation, I pointed out that our conversation did not match the information on leaflet. No comment could be given. I asked if it was true that WMDC are creating traffic Chaos in Featherstone in order to create a false picture to enable a funding application for the new bypass? Again, no comment was given. I asked why the date of the letter was the 23rd and not today the 27th. No reply could be given.

Featherstone Traffic Chaos for Another 4 Weeks
In Brief next week

1.   Traffic chaos with big delays and at peak times and up to 2 hours to travel through Featherstone.
2.   Bus services will be cancelled or will run with delays.
3.   There are other road works around Featherstone that will have traffic lights as well.
4.   Shop keepers have not officially been told but apparently some have been asked to keep stutters up on a night for the next few weeks.
5.   The work that had all ready been done is now to be re-done for the umpteenth time.
6.   The 110 plus year old Historical Yorkshire stone is now going again which will be classed as theft.
7.   WMDC still refuse to listen to reports with video of dangerous and disruptive practices which are now set to continue.

What the public can do?
Not a lot really unless many have a go.
1.   You can call WMDC and your complaint will be logged.  This is usually a 20 to 50-minute wait. A reply will be given in 28 days. However, if Featherstone folk do complain in mass like last time WMDC switchboard will block up and create some questions.
2.   Below are the contacts given by WMDC. Jim is obviously no good as he is not allowed to talk and Derrick so far only has an answer machine that does not call back leaving the contact centre and a long wait.
3.   It is now clear that the past and present problems have been ignored by local Cllrs. One district Cllr was questioned on Friday via a blog and replied with a totally different answer. As a district and town Cllr you would be aware of issues not to mention having to drive by them each day. It will be interesting to see the replies from ALL our Cllrs when they start getting bulk emails this week. In defence of our local Cllrs so far allegedly WMDC is not telling them everything either. Someone is not telling the truth?
4.   WMDC has changed a lot and so has how to report issues others should deal with. The last time this happened MP Jon Tricket was contacted. His first response was he could not act on one complaint. This was put right within hours as the MP then received many complaints from many people. The MP the received details. Still awaiting a response from the last disaster so donít hold your hopes up.
5.   The police have been made fully aware of these traffic problems all the 3 years especially with the amount of accidents recently in traffic. If you see something that is not right report it. The more that do the better.
6.   If you decide to call HSE Leeds, The Ombudsman or the Transport Agency save your time. After 28 days you will be told you have to contact WMDC.

Contacts to complain
01924 306028 Derick
01924 302017 Jim
0345 8 506 506 WMDC contact centre customerservices@wakefield.gov.uk
01924 305100 WMDC Chief Executive Merran McRae
01924 655695 MP Jon Trickett  jtrickett@jontrickett.org.uk
03003303000 Department of transport pocorrespondence@dft.gsi.gov.uk

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