Liberal Democrats' January Newsletter

Cold Weather, waterways, energy, Magpie and NHS

Related Links

Matt's January Bulletin on Snow and Stuff

Councillor Ruth Cadbury thinks Tory budget "a farce"

Matt's December Bulletin on Brentford Towers, Recycling, Adverts and more

Matt's November Bulletin on Brentford Towers, Recycling, Adverts and more

Matt's October Bulletin - Fire Hazards, Dog Mess, Police and Parking

Matt's September Bulletin

Matt's August Bulletin

Matt's July Bulletin

Matt's June Bulletin


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During the cold spell, remember our elderly neighbours

Elderly and disabled people, particularly those with serious illnesses, are more vulnerable to cold weather.  If you have elderly or disabled friends, relatives or neighbours, make sure you check to see that they are okay.

People on a low income might be eligible for a Cold Weather Payment to help keep warm during the cold weather.

Homes should be kept at the recommended temperature of 18 to 21 degrees Celsius (64 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit).  If you can not heat all the rooms you use, heat the living room during the day and the bedroom just before you go to bed.

Other tips from the NHS are: Keep curtains drawn and doors closed to block out draughts; have regular hot drinks and at least one hot meal a day if possible; wear several light layers of warm clothes; keep as active as possible; and wrap up warm if you do need to go outside.

Community Council launches fundraising appeal for High Court Battle

Brentford Community Council's Waterways sub-committee has issued an urgent call for support to raise £3000 in the next week to help fund an appeal in the High Court of planning permission granted to moor boats where the River Brent meets the River Thames. Andrew has backed the appeal, which has also been supported by the Environmental Law Foundation and monies raised will fund their continued work on the case.  Read more…

Energy Strategy for Brentford

The cold weather and shortages in gas supplies are a timely reminder that the climate is getting more volatile and fossil fuels will run out.  Andrew Dakers has assisted ISIS/ Fulcrum’s first stage study for an ‘Energy strategy for Brentford’.  This sets out how over a number of years we could develop a lower carbon district heating system at the heart of Brentford.  The report will be presented on the evening of 21 January 2010 at the local area committee, Brentford Free Church – please come along and have your say.

Gunnersbury Park Funding Fiasco

Joe Bourke, Andrew Dakers and Mona Naqvi are working with Lib Dem colleagues in Ealing and last month reiterated calls for capital funding to be identified urgently for the regeneration of Gunnersbury Park, mansions and local history museum.  They are urging Hounslow and Ealing Tory administrations to resolve how they will plug the funding gap. At their AGM on Sunday 6th December the Friends of Gunnersbury Park and Museum decided to call on the Secretary of State and English Heritage to put a Repairs Notice on both Councils directing them to immediately repair the stables and other buildings at risk in the park.  Read more…

Magpie & Crown changes hands, but real ale must still be served

The Property Manager acting for The Wellington Pub Company confirmed to Andrew last week that after only a few hours of closure on Monday the Magpie & Crown Pub would reopen under interim management.

We have been assured that the Magpie will continue to serve the regularly changing real ale for which it is renowned and is so enjoyed by many in local community.  This is also important in supporting small breweries and independently run pubs.  We will continue to watch this very closely. 

Unfortunately the faces behind the bar have changed and so we would like to take this opportunity to thank Del, Steve and the rest of the current team that have run the Magpie for so many years for their hard work and the special venue they created on High Street Brentford.  Let's hope some of the spirit lives on.

Your views needed on more east-west links in Brentford

As well as energy, ISIS are also exploring how Brentford’s places could be more ‘joined up’, leaving Commerce Rd’s business zone and The Island less isolated.  See the ISIS presentation slide 42 for a larger version of the graphic .  Do you think more east-west pedestrian links from Commerce Rd to The Butts, Somerset Rd and Robin Grove would be a good thing?  Andrew is not so sure it is a good idea, but wants your views.

...and improving cycling routes in Brentford

The Borough’s Head of Transport is organising a daytime workshop on 21 January to explore how Hounslow can become a ‘Cycling Borough’.  This is likely to involve Isleworth and Brentford area becoming a ‘cycling hub’ and being a particular focus for improvements.  Joe, Andrew and Mona are backing the plans and would welcome any suggestions you may have for how cycle links can be improved in Brentford.  Andrew has already suggested a number of one way streets, where contra-flow cycle lanes would create a safer environment for cyclists and drivers.

Great West Road pedestrian and cyclist safety

The local area committee has collaborated on a cross-party basis to ensure substantial S106 funding is directed at improving the A4 through Brentford.  Andrew and Mona are particularly concentrating on pedestrian safety by Carville Park South, which is used more now that Lionel Rd Primary school has expanded, as well as getting Transport for London to invest in improvements to cycle lanes along the A4 where a local resident was killed in late 2008.

Community Payback - your ideas needs

At a recent local area committee meeting the Community Payback team presented their work which, as well as being a means to punish offenders for their crimes against community without serving a prison term, also demands offenders pay the community back for the crimes they have committed.  Please email Joseph ( if you would like us to nominate a local project such as a street clean up, graffiti removal, or painting of derelict or run down buildings that Community Payback could take on.

Local council committee to check health of NHS in Brentford

The Chair of NHS Hounslow has agreed to speak to the local area committee in March, although the Mr Relph, Chief Executive of NHS Hounslow, is still unavailable to attend.  This was only confirmed after Andrew raised his concerns in public at the organisation’s lack of willingness to engage.  Mr Relph was invited this Autumn by local area committee chair Cllr Shirley Fisher to speak to local councillors on the trust's current development plans in response to the continued growth of Brentford’s population. Mr Relph was recently revealed by the Taxpayers Alliance as one of the highest earners in the public sector with a salary of £202,500 per annum. Read more…

Brentford's Liberal Democrats councillor Andrew Dakers and candidates can be found and contacted on their website

January 20, 2010