Focus Article February 2018

Christmas seems like a distant memory and here we are already into February, where does the time go?

I was delighted to see that Mrs Birch, the Head Teacher of Hambleton Primary Academy, was awarded an OBE for her service to education in the New Year’s Honours list. This is very well deserved.

The New Year also brought the sad news of June Jackson’s passing. June, as you will know, was a shining light in the fight against Gas Storage for many years.  She was also a very determined campaigner on many local issues from trying to improve road safety to addressing the risk of flooding.  She also served on the Parish Council for many years.  I had the honour of working with June on many issues and I will always remember her as a kind and very committed lady who fought hard for the local community. 

In last month’s article I said that I would be objecting to Cuadrilla’s latest application for Rosearcre Wood on the unsuitability of the proposed transportation routes.  I have now submitted a robust objection. 

The three routes proposed would run between Roseacre Wood through Inskip and Elswick to the A585 at Thistleton or along Salwick Road to join the A583 at Clifton. 

The routes, particularly through Inskip, are unsuitable for HGVs and would pose a risk to other road users and pedestrians, particularly children attending Inskip St Peter’s C of E Primary School.  Indeed, Cuadrilla had previously ruled out the route on safety grounds and I enjoyed pointing this out in my objection and at my recent meeting with the company’s Chief Executive.  I also plan to meet with the Communities Secretary who will ultimately determine the planning application.

I recently met with the new County Councillor for Wyre Rural Central, Matthew Salter, who was elected following the sudden and sad death of Vivien Taylor. 

I have spoken to Matthew about many of the LCC issues which concern residents locally, including highways and traffic issues.  He is very keen to speak to residents to find out the challenges of the Division of Wyre Rural Central. Matthew can be contacted by email at  

One major concern to residents of St Michaels is the speed of vehicles traveling through the village.  While this is an issue that Matthew will look into as the County Councillor, I have already been in touch with the Police who confirmed to me that the Garstang based Local Policing Team have conducted Community Road Watch on both the East and West of St Michaels village, the fixed speed camera remains in situ on the west bound carriageway and that the mobile speed camera site has been re-introduced as well for enforcement.

Over the last few months I have been highlighting to Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group the difficulty patients from Over Wyre have accessing the Extended Access (Out of Hours GP) services which are based in Fleetwood and Freckleton.  I am calling for a hub to be located in Poulton and will keep you updated on my discussions.

A number of residents from Calder Vale have contacted me to complain about the slow broadband speed in the village. I have asked BT whether they will be extending superfast broadband to the village and have been told they consider it commercially unviable.

 I am angry that BT seem to have abandoned Calder Vale.  It is simply not acceptable and I will be meeting with senior managers from the company.  I am also asking Lancashire County Council to fund the work and will report back on the County’s response. 

I have also been informed that residents in Calder Vale have experienced frequent and prolonged power cuts and have written to the Chief Executive of Electricity North West asking him to investigate and take action to address the causes.

Recently I visited some residents affected by last year’s flooding. These visits not only highlight the plight people find themselves in due to flooding but enable residents to pass on to me their local knowledge about flooding in their particular area and in turn I pass this information on.

If I can be of any assistance to you please ring my Office at the House of Commons on 0207 219 5804 or my Constituency Office on 01995 672976, email me at or write to me at the House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA.