I’m proud to have stood shoulder to shoulder with Wordsworth Drive and Sugar Hill Close residents throughout the long campaign to save their homes. This year will see a decision made whether the planning application goes ahead or not, which could be in the coming months. It’s wrong that residents were put in this limbo in the first place. It’s wrong that a private landlord has such power over tenants, many of whom have little or no rights. It’s wrong that people’s homes and part of our area’s heritage are under threat of demolition.
I put in my strong objection to the planning application soon after it was first lodged, and also submitted a more recent objection due to developments. This whole issue is very close to my heart. There is a long standing link through previous Labour councillors and the shared history of the local pits and Labour activism. Residents have suffered over a long period due to Pemberstone and it isn’t right. The residents know that I’m fighting the planning application all the way, and will continue to do alI can on their behalf:
I’ve backed residents in various ways, I’ve worked closely with the Save Our Homes group throughout the campaign to come up with ideas and support the group to fight the demolition of their homes. Made sure a deputation of residents could speak at full council and I’ve spoken at full council in support of residents’ plight.
I organised for a lawyer to come to the estate to speak to the action group of residents to get initial legal advice. I brought Chris Kitchen from the NUM to the estate, secured involvement from the National Union of Mineworkers.
It was a sight to behold residents marching to ‘Save our Homes’ through Rothwell. I Organised the march with residents and the NUM and proudly marched with the National Union of Mineworkers, residents of the estate, local community groups and the Rothwell Labour Party.
I brought the executive board member twice and Director of Housing and Communities to the estate to talk with residents. I’ve helped to secure media coverage on numerous occasions. Supported residents at meetings including when Pemberstone finally agreed to meet with residents.
As chair of the Outer South Community Committee, brought the issue to the agenda where the committee has put in its own objection to the planning application in support of residents as a formal committee of the council. The committee also reiterated the request I and residents already made to the council to look into the possibility of buying the homes on the estate. Albeit with budget cuts, the council is cash strapped and depending on the planning decision, the land value would sky rocket if planning permission did get granted.
Together, we’ve made sure the pressure on Pemberstone is kept up to the maximum. The residents group have done a fantastic job and have been courageous in fighting this together all the way. They have put a tremendous amount of work into the campaign on behalf of other residents. I will be speaking at the plans panel in favour of residents and with a view to getting the planning application turned down at the planning meeting and will continue to speak with colleagues on the plans panel about the injustices that local people have faced and continue to face
We must stick to the goal. Together we can win this.