Suffolk One public meeting well attended

The public meeting at Pinewood Community Hall went well last night. Around 100 people attended. From those in the streets nearest to the new sixth form college there is understandable concern about student parking. However those just outside the restricted zone are equally worried as they feel the parking will be displaced into their streets.

What everyone really wants is parking on site. The parish council and I encouraged people to write in to the County Council with their views. Most people seemed to find the information given during the meeting very helpful. There was no County Council officer present, but parish councillors had done their homework and PC Gary Austen was also on hand to give advice.

I have already received copies of emails sent into the County Council, which means that people are taking it very seriously. We are planning a protest on Sunday outside the college at noon. The latter stage of the consultation process conducted by the County Council has been appalling.

Parking issues at Suffolk One – Public meeting 13th April

This Tuesday Pinewood Parish Council are to hold a public meeting on the proposed parking restrictions near the new Suffolk One college. The meeting is at 8.30pm at Pinewood Community Hall, with doors open at 8.15pm. Last week I spoke about this issue at a number of other parish council meetings in my area. No-one can understand why there has been no provision for student parking. As the land is up for sale alongside the Suffolk One site many local people want Suffolk County Council to buy it for parking.

Parking has been an emotive issue from the very start and I hope that local residents will not shoot the messenger ie the parish council and myself as County Councillor as we have done our very best to keep them informed and to support them. They have the opportunity to respond to the orders which were published this week, saying whether they object or not. Unfortunately the consultation is still not signposted on the County Council website, which is very disappointing as I have reported this to various people including the Director of Environment and Transport.

Address for comments/objections is Heather Miller, Suffolk County Council, Endeavour House, Russell Road, Ipswich IP1 2BX

Suffolk’s education results fall under Conservatives

The fact that Suffolk’s GCSE results started to fall below the national average when the Conservatives took control of the council in 2005 is a sad indictment. For the 12 years in which Liberal Democrats jointly ran the County Council Suffolk was admired as one of the best education authorities in the country. So why has it all gone so badly wrong?  Someone writing to the East Anglian Daily Times yesterday

rightly identified that the Conservatives have created chaos and uncertainty in their mad dash to abolish Middle Schools. Instead they should have been directing their attention to deprived areas, where there is a huge gap in educational achievement for children in less well off families. The five worst performing secondary schools in Suffolk are all in deprived areas. Three are within the two tier education system in Ipswich and Felixstowe. The other two poorly performing schools are in the three tier areas of Haverhill and Lowestoft. This shows that poor performance is related to deprivation rather than school structure. 

Some of the best performing schools in the County are in 3 tier areas and the paper for the 12th January Cabinet meeting states that primary schools in the three tier system are doing better than those in the two tier system. Months ago we advised that the schools organisation review should be abandoned. Our advice fell on deaf ears.