Inside the Council: Mass opposition to junction plan

Since Calderdale Council announced the proposed scheme for alterations to Hipperholme junction, I and my ward colleagues have been contacted by many local residents and businesses who are very concerned about what is proposed.

Indeed I have not at this stage heard from any of my constituents who are in favour of the proposals. The only element that one constituent has commented favourably upon is the proposed pedestrian crossings on their own would be a help in his opinion, without the need to change the traffic flows as suggested.

I will not be supporting the current proposals for the junction as there is mass local opposition to them and my duty is to represent the views of my constituents as far as I am able to.

If it could be done, which is unlikely due to the rules governing the ‘pinch point funding’ for the scheme, I would recommend that the current scheme be not pursued any further and a request be made to the relevant Government department to enable the funding to be spent on other key projects, such as improvements to pedestrian crossing facilities on Wakefield Road to make it safe for families crossing to go to The Stray and to implement the much need pedestrian controlled crossing facilities at Bailiff Bridge traffic light junction.

It seems ironic thatover 1,000 Bailiff Bridge residents sent in a petition to the council a long time ago requesting pedestrian crossing facilities in the village, following the building of over 700 new houses and we are told there is no money for it to be done, while at the same time the residents in Hipperholme are having a scheme virtually foisted upon them, which they do not want, in order that further mass development can take place in Hipperholme, allegedly in accordance with the projected housing needs of the future.

Electric blanket safety

This is the time of year also when those with electric blankets think of getting them out in readiness for the coming cold winter months.

Older people are six times more likely than anyone else to die in a house fire caused by a faulty electric blanket. To help stay safe in your home this winter follow these simple safety tips:

● Always buy new. Second-hand blankets may not be safe

● Have your blanket checked by an expert every year

● Follow the manufacturer’s instructions

● If your blanket shows any signs of damage – do not use it

● Check the plug cord for any signs of wear and tear or damage

● Do not plug the blanket into an overloaded socket

● Never use a blanket if it is wet or creased and never switch it on and dry it out

● Never use a hot water bottle and electric blanket together

● When the blanket is not been used unplug it

● Always spread the blanket out – never use it folded

● Keep the blanket stored properly during the summer months ● Most electric blankets are designed not to be washed – always check manufacturer’s instructions.

For more home fire advice please contact West Yorkshire Fire Service.

Get pruning for the winter

As winter approaches it is that time of year when we all need to think of things to do around our property. It is an ideal time to prune back bushes which may be overhanging public footpaths or which may be obscuring sightlines on roads or, in some cases they have grown to such an extent that the may be covering road traffic signs and even street nameplates.

It is important that homeowners and those with any land in the area undertake at least a visual inspection of their boundary hedges and trees, etc. Obscured street name plates can sometimes mean emergency vehicles may have difficulty locating a person or family in need and this may add vital minutes to help arriving.

In addition, to trimming and clearing overgrown bushes, clearing internal footpaths of leaves and litter which may have blown in can reduce the risk of trips or slips. It is also an ideal time to have a good tidy up in the garden as residents will then themselves benefit from having a presentable garden over the coming winter period. It also serves to brighten up the visual amenity up of a residential area for everyone to enjoy rather than let a property become overgrown and an eyesore for everyone to see.

Cyclists stay safe and be seen

This time of year it is more important than ever to ensure that cyclists ensure they check the lights on their bicycles, check the reflectors, try to wear clothing that makes you more visible to pedestrians and motorists as the dark mornings and evenings can often put cyclists more in danger.

As always remember to wear a safety helmet and as a help to other cyclists please report any potholes on the road surface to Calderdale Council as soon as possible so that measures can be put in place to rectify any deteriorating surfaces in a timely manner.

By Councillor Graham Hall