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Local Councillors Secure £45K Footpath Upgrade

Butt Lane Councillors inspect footpath 216 before upgrade works begin.

Butt Lane Councillors inspect footpath 216 before upgrade works begin.

Local Labour councillors hail success after securing £45,000 to upgrade public footpath 216 in Butt Lane.  The footpath is accessed from West Avenue and runs behind the houses of Church Street, finally exiting onto Congleton Road adjacent to St. Saviours Primary School. The improvement works will be funded by a Public Right of Way contribution from Taylor Wimpey. Taylor Wimpey’s contribution was secured through a section 106 agreement with Newcastle Borough Council.

It is understood that the works will be completed by contractors appointed by Staffordshire County Council and not housing developer, Taylor Wimpey. The contractor will begin work on the surfacing of the footpath on Monday 16th January.  The path will be temporarily closed for the duration of the works. Residents are politely asked to use other routes until the works are completed.

Councillor Kyle Robinson said: “I welcome the news that this footpath will finally be brought up to a decent standard.  Back in 2013, Sylvia and I raised the alarm about the state the public footpath had been left in following the development of Bluebell Croft.  The footpath in question has been used for many years by local residents as a safer route to school and for recreational purposes.  I am pleased we have been listened to on this matter and finally this 106 agreement will deliver for local people.  It’s about time our local area gets the investment it deserves and we will fight for more.”

Councillor Sylvia Dymond added: “Many residents have been calling for an improvement to the footpath, including those that have moved onto the new estate.  Local people have endured two years of problems with fencing, building work and a muddy overgrown footpath so this news is well received.  At last we have a safer route for everyone to reach the local school, shops and to just enjoy a walk.”

Footpath 216 begins on West Avenue and leads all the way up to Congleton Road.

Footpath 216 begins on West Avenue and leads all the way up to Congleton Road.

Neglected Crash Barriers Put Residents at Risk

Councillor Kyle Robinson inspects damaged and broken crash barriers on Congleton Road, Butt Lane.

Councillor Kyle Robinson inspects damaged and broken crash barriers on Congleton Road, Butt Lane.

Councillor Kyle Robinson is calling on Staffordshire County Council Highways department to fix damaged crash barriers in the Butt Lane ward located on Congleton Road and Fourth Avenue.  Some of the damaged barriers were reported months ago and have yet to be fixed.  Highways officers also highlighted in an email that repairing the barriers were not a priority in certain locations, even at a school entrance.  There have been several accidents at both locations in recent months and residents are furious that the Council is failing to take their concerns seriously.  The crash barriers were put in place to protect pedestrians walking past busy junctions which are also known to be crash hot spots.

Kyle said: “I reported the damaged barriers outside of the school entrance on Fourth Avenue nearly 12 months ago and the County Council has still done nothing to repair them.  I am particularly concerned that damaged barriers at a school entrance are not seen as a priority.  Well over 400 school children use Fourth Avenue each morning to access The Kings School.  I think the safety of our kids should always be a top priority and I call on Staffordshire County Council to get their act together and fix these barriers as a matter of urgency.  The regularly damaged barriers on the Congleton Road Junction with Cedar Avenue is further evidence that this particular stretch of road is dangerous and a thorough traffic survey is required.”

Local resident, Helen Chadwick said: “The barriers were installed to protect people walking past busy junctions.  The barriers on Fourth Avenue are near to a school entrance and I dread to think what could happen should a car hit the already damaged and weakened barriers.  The County Council should fix the problem without question or further delay.”

Crash barriers at both sites have been re-reported and reference numbers have been obtained.  Any updates received regarding future repairs will be published here for information.

Shock as local pets poisoned

Kyle Robinson's family cat.

Kyle Robinson’s family cat, Marshall.

Local residents of Talke, Butt Lane, Clough Hall and Kidsgrove are up in arms after a string of cat poisonings. Over the last few weeks pet owners have been left bereaved and upset after discovering their pets have been killed with anti-freeze. It has been known for some people to put anti-freeze into milk and cat food to lure pets in. This leads to a slow and painful death and there is not much a vet can do other than put the animal down if left too long.

Now residents are calling for action and want the Police and Councillors to be vigilant and tackle this problem head on.

Karen Capper , local Talke resident said: “it seems there’s a deliberate number of anti freeze poisonings especially in gardens at this time of year. It’s cruel and disgusting. People must report this if they know someone is doing this on purpose.

“Poisonous Slug pellets can be a problem and of course perfectly legal to use by gardeners. The grit used in the winter months is also deadly to household pets. A quick tip is to make sure you check your pet’s paws when they have been outside and give them a quick clean.”

The local RSPCA have dealt with similar complaints before. Back in June 2012 Julie Lyons, an inspector from the RSPCA, told the local Sentinel: “We ask pet owners to be vigilant and report anything suspicious.

“We also want to urge cat owners to seek immediate veterinary attention for their pet if they come home unwell. If a cat does ingest a chemical substance the quicker they are treated by a vet, the better their chance of survival.”


Kyle’s other family cat, Tiggy.

Town Mayor, Cllr Kyle Robinson said: “People who do this to other peoples pets should be ashamed of themselves. I was brought up with pets at home and they become part of your family. To some people losing a cat or a dog is like losing a member of the family and it causes a lot of bereavement and sometimes depression. People who are purposely leaving anti freeze in cat milk and food should think about the consequences of their actions.

“Following on from requests by the local community I will do my best to raise awareness of this problem. I can remember my auntie’s cat Merlin being shot by a pellet gun some years ago and it was horrible to see the family pet suffer. People need to be aware of animal cruelty and report it to the police and RSPCA. I ask residents to keep me informed of the problem and I will continue to raise this issue at community meetings. Animal cruelty must be stamped out.”