Leo Montague – Working for Monkston ward

Leo Montague – Lib Dem candidate for Monkston ward, MK COuncil on 2nd May 2019

Lib Dem campaigner Leo Montague is standing for election to MK Council on 2nd May as the third councillor for Monkston ward, alongside Jenni and Vanessa.
Leo grew up in MK and went to school here. He has been an active member of the community for well over 10 years, serving as a Youth Cabinet Member, and a Parish Councillor, before moving to Monkston and joining the Focus team. In his spare time he manages a Sunday League football
team and enjoys playing piano and guitar.
Leo says “Lib Dems have made a real difference to MK and to our area, and I’m keen to help continue the work. I’m passionate about the environment and I know many of you are too, so I’m particularly pleased about the extra money the Lib Dems have got there for the coming year, and I’m looking forward to making sure that its spent well in our area, but our programme includes many other important things that the Lib Dems are pushing for to make MK better as well.”
● Increasing the Council house building programme to provide more affordable housing for larger
families and free up small homes for small families
● Continuing the great work for the street homeless that’s helped many to get back into housing,
health and work
● Cleaning up the litter blackspots and dealing with the brambles and weeds
● Sorting out long term management of our landscaping with the Parks Trust
● Sorting out the recycling system so that MK returns to being one of the best for recycling
● Improving mental health provision, particularly for children and those threatened with, or
recovering from, homelessness, and more support for Special Educational Needs provision
● Continuing to press for proper funding for care for the elderly from the Government
● Supporting plans for the new University and for the expansion of MK College
Vanessa and Jenni say “We’ve enjoyed working with Leo over the past couple of years and we really look forward to him being elected and
joining us on the Council. Please support him, so that the Lib Dem Focus team can work even harder for you and for this area.

Recycling Info

The Council has published a new leaflet telling you what you can and can’t recycle.  Download it here.
Please note that the Council will not take ANY items left loose beside bins and bags except Christmas trees.

Items that can’t be recycled include plastic bags, film food wrappings and covers, and crisp packets.  Cardboard must be folded or torn up and put in the clear sacks. Any item left beside the sacks, including cardboard, can’t be recycled.  Dead birds and animals can only be put in green bins if they have no fur or feathers.  Wrap them and put them in black sacks otherwise please.
Please recycle as much as you can.  It helps the environment and keeps our council tax bills down!

Plan:MK Exhibition at Kingston Library until Sat 9th December

Plan:MK, which will define the Council’s current plans for development until 2031, is out for consultation until 20th December.  An exhibition about it is at Kingston Library until Saturday 9th December.

The Plan includes catering for the number of houses that MK’s growing population will need, and a wide variety of jobs to go with them, with most new jobs in “knowledge based” sectors, and new schools, health centres, community centres, etc. in the new major development areas as well as a major expansion in CMK.  It will see MK’s population rise to 350-400,000 by 2031.

A number of small sites for development had already been approved in Monkston ward, including:

  • Ladbroke Grove, Monkston Park (housing)
  • Lilleshall Avenue, Monkston (housing)
  • The schools at Kents Hill Park
  • Walton Manor (part housing part employment)

And very close to Monkston ward:

  • The Eastern Expansion area including Broughton Gate and Brooklands for housing, and Magna Park for employment
  • The Strategic Land Allocation along the H8 (A421) towards the motorway and to the east of Old Farm Park
  • The land on the corner of Towergate and Groveway in Wavendon Gate
  • The completion of Oakgrove

A few additional sites in Monkston ward are now proposed in Plan:MK:

All of these sites had previously been reserved for future development, and the Walnut Tree ones were in the Neighbourhood Plan, although Walton Community Council wanted a day nursery and more parking as part of the Wadesmill Lane site.

And sites nearby:

  • Land on the corner between Isaacson Drive and Ortensia Drive in Wavendon Gate
  • Land on the corner between Britten Grove and Byrd Crescent in Old Farm Park
  • A new major site extending the city between Wavendon and The Brickhills accessed from an extension to the H10

All in the Neighbourhood Plan.

Please have your say on the proposals by 20th December 2017.  The changes that can be made at this stage are limited, but if you have serious concerns about any of it please let Cllr Jenni Ferrans know, as well as responding formally, and we will see whether we can alleviate the issues.

Litter Everywhere!

The Focus team has been reporting litter black-spots around the ward, asking MK Council to clear them more often.  The underpasses near Oakgrove School at Rayners Lane and near the V10, on Monkston Park, and the bus shelter on the V10 by Monkston are a disgrace!

Richard and Vanessa at the underpass between Monkston and Monkton Park near Oakgrove School

Richard and Vanessa at the underpass between Monkston and Monkton Park near Oakgrove School

Jenni at the bus shelter near Monkston on the V10.

Jenni at the bus shelter near Monkston on the V10.

Winter Pruning

MK Council’s winter pruning of its shrubs and trees is in progress.  Hedges in Walnut Tree have been cut, and some other areas have been cleared, but many remain to be done.

But round the corner in Queensbury Lane, the brambles are uncut.

And in Queensbury Lane, Monkston Park, the brambles are uncut.

Vanessa and Richard can walk to the shops now from Bluebell Close, Walnut Tree.

Vanessa and Richard can walk to the shops now from Bluebell Close, Walnut Tree.

Vanessa got MK Council to clear the branches from the corner of Perivale, Monston Park.

Vanessa got MK Council to clear the branches from the corner of Perivale, Monston Park.

And in Monkston. Jenni and Richard have reported several areas of brambles, and are asking the Council to trace the owners of this patch near Wymondham.

In Monkston. Jenni and Richard have reported several areas of brambles, and are asking the Council to trace the owners of this patch near Wymondham.

Elections in Monkston ward

We have three sets of voting going on soon locally.

On May 5th we have the election for councillors on Milton Keynes Council.  You can see the Lib Dem Manifesto for Milton Keynes here.

V McP cropOur local candidate is Cllr Vanessa McPake, who has served this area as a councillor or campaigner for ten years, and is standing for re-election as a councillor.  She is now campaigning to:

  • Get more houses built that our children can afford
  • Clean up the litter grot spots with more flexible litter picking
  • Increase our evening and weekend buses
  • Safeguard and maintain our lovely landscape
  • Work with parish councils to keep our play areas.

Also on May 5th we have the election for a Police Commissioner.  This is the elected person who oversees the Police in the whole of Thames Valley.  Lib Dems believe that one person cannot possibly represent the interests of such a wide area, but that is the system we have, so we have to work with it at present.

Our candidate is John Howson, who is campaigning to cut crime, not constables!  He points out that if we can use modern methods to increase detection rates, and use the best methods of dealing with each category of offender to reduce reoffending, then we will reduce crime without needing to spend more!  Win-Win!

You can see more about his campaign on the Thames Valley Police website at https://www.choosemypcc.org.uk/area/thames-valley

Finally, on June 23rd we have the big one – the referendum on whether to Remain In the EC or to Leave the EC.  You can see the Lib Dem party comment on this here.  After the Council elections, we’ll put more on this website about the issues for Milton Keynes.

Lindisfarne Drive Parking Restrictions

The Council has finally agreed to consult on restricting parking on the bend at Lindisfarne Drive, Monkston.
They are also proposing double yellow lines around the roundabout with Lanercost/Ulverscroft and across the redway crossing points around the roundabout, to stop people blocking the pathways.

The map of the proposed restrictions is here.

Please send your comments to:
The Network TRO Officer,
Highways Department, Public Realm Services Group,
Synergy Park, Chesney Wold,
Bleak Hall,
Milton Keynes, MK6 1LY
to be received no later than 16th September 2015 quoting reference PH-S1-TRO-127.

No Local GP?

The Focus team at Walnut Tree surgery where expansion is desperately needed

The Focus team at Walnut Tree surgery where expansion is desperately needed

Many people locally can’t register for a GP or NHS Dentist, or have to wait ages for appointments.  The Focus team is calling on NHS England to make more provision available either in Monkston ward, or on the estates immediately next to our homes.

NHS England have now confirmed:

  • Not to expand either MK Village or Walnut Tree surgeries to take new patients
  • to close Broughton Gate surgery and open a new “super-surgery” at Brooklands
  • to send all new patients to that surgery – near Junction 14
  • Walnut Tree surgery to get help to shorten GP waiting times – for those who’ve been able to register there!

We know there are hundreds, if not thousands, of local people, particularly in Monkston, Monkston Park, Kents Hill and Walton Grange, who have not been able to register at either Walnut Tree or MK Village.  This means drastically increased journeys for them, with no direct bus, when they are ill.

If you want to protest about this, and to ask for MK Village and Walnut Tree surgeries to be expanded, and more dentist provision to be made available locally, please:

We have to keep the pressure up on this!  We will be taking your complaints to meetings of the MK Health and Wellbeing Board, so please get lots of signatures!

Dustbin Chaos on Monkston

Residents in one corner of Monkston were completely bemused last week.  First they were told that their rubbish collection day was moving from Tuesday to Wednesday.  And then there was no sign of the rubbish truck!  Thanks to the quick action of Cllr Jenni Ferrans their rubbish was collected – on THURSDAY!

Jenni commented: “Most of the collection went smoothly, but the estate is now split between two rounds. The area of Chetwode Avenue, Lanercost Crescent, Wymondham and the roads off them are supposed to be collected by a different truck, also on Wednesday.  For some reason the truck didn’t collect most of the rubbish last week.  The Focus team still haven’t had an explanation from MK Council but at least we were able to get the rubbish collected the following day.”

Please remember: your rubbish should be out by 7am on collection day.  The area left last week is likely to be collected much earlier than previously.