Your Councillors

Heather Mack and Dave Wilcox held their seats in the May 2nd elections, which saw the Green Party become the majority party in Bristol.

Thank you to everyone who voted. We promise to work hard for you and represent you (whether you voted for us or not!). Our priorities for the next 3 years are:

  • to work with partners to ensure developments respect local wishes and bring improvements to the area.
  • to create safe streets for everyone by introducing traffic calming and reducing speed limits
  • to improve our local environment, by introducing wildflowers and increased biodiversity to our green spaces and acting on fly-tipping.

Blake Centre - Meanwhile Site

We are aware of plans to use the location of Blake Centre on Gainsborough Square as a meanwhile site and understand this will be subject to planning; we’ve not yet seen the planning application.

We have a housing crisis in Bristol, which results in many people, especially young people, struggling and turning to unconventional housing options. We have deep sympathy for those in insecure and inappropriate accommodation. With rents for a single room in a shared house in Lockleaze starting at £800 per month and the Government having no legal responsibility to house single people, there are few options for people on low incomes.

We support the use of and creation of more ‘meanwhile’ sites to provide safer places for people to live in their vans. Ultimately, we need to provide appropriate housing and measures such as rent controls so everyone can afford somewhere safe and decent to live.

Residents will have an opportunity to ask questions and raise concerns with the meanwhile team (meanwhile.sites@bristol.gov.uk), and as councillors, we will also be doing this. There will also be a process for commenting on the planning application; this is not yet live, but we will share when it is. We have already raised concerns about nearby residents’ properties and the security of the site and hope this will be considered appropriately. Toilet and waste facilities will be provided on-site.

Cameron Centre development consultation

Deadline for the consultation is 13th March, we strongly encourage you to submit your views here:
https://www.ask.bristol.gov.uk/cameron-centre-consultation

As your local councillors we have been in negotiations between council officers, cabinet members, the Mayors officer, Lockleaze Neighbourhood Trust and residents to get the best deal possible for the community.

We hope changes will be made to the current plans being consulted on. Here are our comments on the proposed plans.

We support affordable housing, especially housing which meets the needs of the local community, will be included in the Lockleaze lettings policy, and is wheelchair accessible.

However, we’re also very aware of the numbers of houses being built in an area which currently has very few amenities, and where services are already under great pressure. The health centre does not have capacity for all of the extra residents, and there are already significant issues with dentists. Lockleaze has no café, pub or any venue for people to just spend time and socialise. The Lockleaze estate doesn’t even have a proper supermarket. We cannot just keep building houses without providing space for all these other necessary services.

Lockleaze Neighbourhood Trust provides an invaluable service to the community, providing a weekly community café/lunch, coordinating warm spaces, hosting many, many community groups, supporting the residents planning group, and much, much more. We welcome the commitment to community asset transfer the community space in this development to LNT, but thus far the council have not committed to providing adequate space. We support LNT’s plan to run a nursery for the local community. We are facing a child care crisis, with 2/3rds of UK women saying lack of childcare impacts their career progression.

We would like to see 450msq committed to community space. Plans for a nursery would require outside space connected to the indoor nursery space. We would not be happy to see secure bike parking space removed in the development.

We are keen that residents views about a library service are considered, particularly around providing access later in the day, study and computer space and think there is a real opportunity for the council to work closely with Lockleaze Neighbourhood Trust to deliver community needs if they are included as development partners in the project.

We have heard concerns from residents about the appearance of the designs, and would like to see a more aspirational design.

Another £50,000 in match funding has been secured for a playground on South Purdown by your local councillors. Now the council is ready to start designing the playground they need to hear your views on what equipment is wanted.

What do local kids want in a playground? >

New Tree Planting Consultations!

One for Purdown Open Space – 10 new feature trees

And for Lockleaze Open Space – behind the Lockleaze Family Club. Four new feature trees.

Please email your thoughts to onetreeperchild@bristol.gov.uk

More local funding success

Local councillors, Heather and David, have been successful in securing money from the community infrastructure fund for two Lockleaze projects this year.
The Vench will receive funding for floodlights for their sports pitch. The Vench is an amazing project supporting children and young people in Lockleaze, so we are thrilled to support them.
Money was also secured to improve walking routes across South Purdown to connect the area around Elmcroft Crescent with Glenfrome Primary school and the surrounding area.

Councillors Discuss Lockleaze Concerns With Police Chief

Heather and David invited Mark Shelford, the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner, to visit Lockleaze to discuss a top concern among residents – road safety and youth provision.

The police chief promised more visits from the speed camera van and to work with the councillors to reduce speeding in Lockleaze. He said that plans for the Stottbury and Rousham Roads traffic calming scheme were due to be made final so that work could begin soon.

Heather and David are working with the Vench and other youth service providers to get more funding and facilities for young people in Lockleaze.

Youth Work in Lockleaze

As your local councillors we are working with police and local youth workers to monitor local anti-social behaviour, and take action/provide support where needed. Although many reports are repeated on social media, Lockleaze does not have a significantly high rate of youth anti-social behaviour or violent crime, and we should all be careful not to vilify any group of people on social media.

The Lockleaze Youth & Play Partnership, which includes The Vench, CYN, local schools, Bristol City Council, Children’s Centre and Police, meet on a regular basis to discuss provision for children and young people aged 0-18 years in the area. Together they are working with the BCC families in focus team to develop contextual safeguarding agreement – a document to link all organisation working on this together to ensure support and provision are as effective as possible within our stretched funding streams. We are looking at increasing the provision of youth work in the area, but often the funding we have for other projects (E.G. a playground) is not suitable because it is one off funding for a physical project.

We are working with The Vench to get more funding for Youth Workers in the area – it is this rather than more spaces/physical infrastructure that is needed.

We are talking to the police and community development workers about hosting a public meeting to discuss the issues. Get in touch or watch this space to find out more.

The Vench, Creative Youth Network and St James’ Church are looking for Volunteer Youth Mentors to increase capacity to support young people, please get in touch with us if you would like to find out more.

South Lockleaze Playground. Location announced!

We are thrilled to have secured almost £100,000 of funding for a playground in South Lockleaze, where there was a really lack of playground provision. We have been consulting with local residents for around 6 weeks and have concluded the Elmcroft/Muller Road location is the best option.
Thanks to everyone who responded to the consultation. We had a good number of responses from a variety of local residents, many with children who would use the facility. Responses were well split between communities near each site.
54% of respondents showed a preference for the Elmcroft/Muller Road site, 31% for the Heyford site and 15% showed no preference. Based on this, and the numerous comments – we will ask the Council’s parks team to move forwards with the planned Muller Road Site. There is still a long road to go as we need to secure another £85,000 in matched funding – which we can now apply for.

FAQ’s
Why were only these options proposed?
There are many considerations to be taken into account for a new playground. Firstly, the request for a new playground came mostly from residents in the Shaldon Road area – so it needed to be accessible from there. Secondly, there are often issues which prevent use of a certain site, like underground cables/pipes, or flooding. And we also needed a site that was reasonably overlooked and visible in order to stop vandalism.
Why wasn’t a formal consultation run?
The council has a legal obligation to consult on certain decisions, such as road changes and major developments. A new playground does not fall into this category so the Council provided no funding or resource for a formal consultation. Ultimately the location decision was left to us, as your local councillors. We thought it was important to consult the community, so we have chosen to put our own resources and effort into that, we hand delivered letters to many of the local streets, posted on social media and knocked on doors to hear people’s views.
Why did we not propose a location covering the Lockleaze estate?
We are elected to represent Lockleaze ward – which covers the area of Eastville West of the M32, and the area around Fairfield School. As part of the Council’s Parks and Green spaces strategy Bristol has a max walking distance any residential street should be from a playground – and this area around Muller Road/Shaldon Road is the part of Lockleaze furthest from a playground. We are also pushing for (and hopeful) that there will be a playground in the new Dovercourt development, to cover that area.
Is the air quality by Muller Road dangerous?
We have walked around the area with an air quality monitor at various times in the afternoon/evening to measure the worst air quality, and all readings were within the ‘good’ category – apart from high pollen when we were near tree blossom.

Conclusion
Ultimately there are a lot of compromises to be made, between cost, accessibility and which parts of Lockleaze will be closest to the playground. The Muller rd location was the most popular location, seems to be the best spot, and a new playground will be a fantastic asset for many young families on the nearby streets.
Speaking to parents in the area I heard that most currently drive their children to a playground. This has negative impacts on the environment, on local traffic and air quality, and children’s health, as the worst air quality is often inside a car sat in traffic. So I am thrilled that we have managed to secure this new playground for Lockleaze, and can’t wait for it to open and improve quality of life for many families and children in the area.

Tree planting in Lockleaze Open Space

We had an excellent turnout for a tree planting session in Lockleaze Open Space by the Purdown Tower.

Trees are being planted as part of the One Tree Per Child Scheme.

More dates are planned in the future – come out and get muddy for a good cause!

New Playground Coming

Your local Green councillors successfully gained nearly £90,000 funding for a new playground in Lockleaze. In an area committee meeting of councillors from surrounding wards, Heather and David successfully secured around 2/3rds of the overall Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) funding for Lockleaze. Lockleaze is experiencing a lot of new development, which brings this funding to the wider area, and has a real lack of playgrounds. Residents have raised need this over and over and Heather and David were thrilled to support this bid made by local residents. The purpose of this funding is to counter some of the negative impacts of new developments and focus on areas of deprivation, such as some parts of Lockleaze. The playground’s exact location is yet to be confirmed, but it will be in South Lockleaze on Purdown, which is the most significant gap between playgrounds.

Funding was also granted to support The Vench provide spaces for the Little Foxes nursery, a valuable asset to our community. 

There will be an opportunity to bid for more money from this fund next year – so please do submit your ideas to Heather and David. Cllr.Heather.Mack@bristol.gov.uk cllr.david.wilcox@bristol.gov.uk

Sir Johns Lane to be given an All-Weather Surface

The steepest and muddiest section of Sir Johns Lane will be closed from the 16th of December 2021 and the 11th of February 2022, so that an All-Weather Surface can be installed.

This will make this important safe route to school more accessible for everyone.

 

Help us fight the changes to the 5 Bus Service.

We are very concerned about the changes to the 5 Bus service. The loss of a Sunday Service and the very early last bus on Weekdays and Saturdays is a massive blow to our community.

We are fighting this change with FirstBus, but we need your help – can you please sign this petition:

https://www.change.org/p/first-bus-restore-the-bristol-5-bus-evening-and-sunday-service 

The more people who sign this petition, the more ammunition we have when we speak to FirstBus!

Protecting wildlife and increasing biodiversity in Lockleaze

As Green Party councillors we take Bristol’s commitment to improving biodiversity and ecology very seriously.

We are awaiting the Action Plan that will spell out the changes needed to fulfil our Ecological Emergency Strategy.

In the meantime Heather has been working with the BCC parks team to agree a reduction to the current mowing regime to allow for more flowers and long grass.

There is are also plans for more trees on Purdown and Downend https://www.bristol.gov.uk/web/guest/museums-parks-sports-culture/tree-planting-consultations

Helpful contacts in Lockleaze

David Wilcox

Councillor for Lockleaze

David has lived in Lockleaze for 20 years and is a local councillor. He brings over 40 years of IT experience to his role and is committed to reducing road fatalities and injuries to zero by 2030. David's dedication and proactive approach make him a valuable asset to Lockleaze and Bristol.

More about David

Heather Mack

Councillor for Lockleaze

As a councillor Heather has prioritised housing issues and support for families struggling in Lockleaze, this is based on her own experience of growing up in council housing and as a foster carer. She volunteers within Lockleaze on food projects and last year organised a community Christmas dinner.

More about Heather
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