●● Family ‘absolutely devastated’ by death of dad Jason North, brother-in-law of murder victim Robert Hart, who was trying to save children from sea. Wendy McGinnis: Absolutely tragic and heart breaking x thoughts are with his loved ones and children x RIP. ●● ST Albans pupils dance their way to a greener future (website) Sinead Fox: This is so deserved, I’m so happy for all involved and the whole school! Amazing news for an amazing school with amazing pupils and staff! Clare White So very proud of my son and all the dancers involved today, they were amazing and did St Albans proud xxx Rachel Fowler: Well done to all the children and teachers at St Albans - they were amazing! Carole Poyser: Well done, a wonderful school where my son was educated and my mum worked. Great memories, enjoy the makeover and treasure your memories of this time. JUST how lucky can the Conservatives get?
Firstly, the report that proposes intrusion into the area’s Green Belt beyond our worst fears was received by them just days before the election and could not be unveiled in time to affect the result.
The the new town centre redevelopment plans just happens to emerge immediately after the election!
We now face a serious threat to the character of our town through policies not properly put before the electorate in the recent local campaigns.
Local businesses have been joined by contributors to this paper’s Facebook page in expressing their dismay that new proposals threaten a town centre in need of a boost.
Car parking is the lifeblood of a shopping centre. Losing control by selling it off is reckless in the extreme and this council has no mandate to do so. Older readers may remember the Lib Dems campaigning about 25 years ago against selling off some town centre parking and then introducing ticket machines to charge for shoppers’ parking.
As a councillor at the time, I can testify to the groundswell of protest that the Tories chose to ignore.
Except, that is in Poynton, where our campaign was more successful and the parish council joined the resistance. Parking near the local shops remained free. Today Poynton has a thriving local shopping centre.
Macclesfield retailers now deserve similar support. Despite recent problems we still have a brilliant range of small shops and larger chains.
Both might be better appreciated if people didn’t have to pay for the privilege of browsing and weren’t constantly looking at their watches.
A cinema would be nice, but thriving shops are the heart and soul of a town like ours.
The Tories have no proper electoral mandate for the changes they propose, and by the next local elections it will be too late.
Perhaps now is the time to remind them of their current fondness for referendums.
How about giving us all the chance to vote on two questions; 1) Should the first two hours in shoppers’ car parks be free? And 2) Should town centre car parks be sold off?
●● This week’s Big Picture is of Bottom Tegsnose Reservoir, near Macclesfield Forest, after the heavy rain and was sent to us by Chris Heapy. Email your pictures to email@example.com or upload them to our Flickr page at www.flickr.com/groups/maccpics. We’ll print the best ones
●● Andrew Haldane says Poynton town centre is thriving because parking near the shops is free