Birley Ward Councillor Completes Race for Life

Councillor Karen McGowan and her daughter Shannon completed the race for life on 15 July in memory of their good friend Jenny Molyneux. Karen said “Thank you to all those that supported us we raised £195 on the justgiving page and £129.20 in cash donations a grand total of £324.20. The atmosphere on the day was amazing – well done everyone”.

Birley Ward Labour Party Particpates in Successful Birley Federation Fun Day

Bryan Lodge, Karen McGowan and Lucky Winner at Birley Federation Fun Day
Bryan Lodge, Karen McGowan and Lucky Winner at Birley Federation Fun Day

Last Saturday saw a very successful Birley Federation Fun Day: a large number of community organisations and local businesses joined youth groups to create a memorable event which was well organised by the staff at Birley Community College and Birley Primary. There was even some sunshine!

Birley Ward Labour Party councillors and members were in attendance, with a stall that included swingball to win soft toys, spot the ball, a chance to win £50 and the opportunity to buy some beautiful hanging baskets created by our very own green-fingered maestro George MacDonald.

Councillors Karen McGowan and Brian Lodge, along with the other members of Birley Ward Labour Party present, would like to thank the staff of both schools as well as everyone else involved in the organisation of what was a great day for the whole community.

The Forgotten Estate?

Birley Councillors Denise Fox, Karen McGowan and Bryan Lodge have expressed dismay over proposals for the future of bus services in the Base Green estate. Consultation is underway on the proposed Sheffield Bus Partnership and the future network to serve the city. Under these proposals, Service 44 that currently runs from the city centre to Crystal Peaks via Base Green and Birley, is facing big changes that will effectively cut off Base Green residents in the evenings. Buses will run in the day time only and will terminate at Birley, no longer providing a link to Crystal Peaks. It’s suggested that the tram will provide an adequate service in the evenings.  “There is an aged population in Base Green and this bus provides a link to Crystal Peaks, Manor Top and the City Centre, especially in the evenings” says Cllr Denise Fox “The idea that elderly residents should use the tram in the evenings sounds good until you realise that it’s a steep uphill climb to the nearest tram stops”.
Many people have already contacted their local councillors as they fear it’s already agreed that the bus is to go. ” I’d hope that this can be looked at again by officers. On paper, I can understand the proposals look workable, but they don’t take account of the geography of the area and what it takes to get to the tram “said Cllr McGowan, adding “there is a fear that Base Green is becoming the forgotten estate. In recent years, the Post Office has gone and the Area Housing Office closed. On both occasions, residents were told that alternative provision was available a short bus journey away. Now we hear the bus service is to be reduced”

The bus also serves the Birley estate, again with a large number of elderly residents and there are fears that they too will face difficulties in the evenings as the alternative also involves a climb.

“I’ve  been given a petition of over 900 signatures organised by the Base Green Tenants and Residents Association and they’ve asked that this be considered as part of the consultation ‘” commented Cllr Bryan Lodge “I’d like to invite the officers to visit the area with local councillors and walk the routes they are suggesting elderly residents take. I think they will be surprised at what they see”

Councillors in Successful Roving Surgery in Thornbridge Drive Area

Bryan Lodge and Karen McGowan Roving Surgery on Thornbridge Drive
Bryan Lodge and Karen McGowan Roving Surgery on Thornbridge Drive

Despite the wind and the rain, last Friday (July 6th) Councillors Bryan Lodge and Karen McGowan completed a roving surgery in the streets around Thornbridge Drive.

This was the first of many such surgeries planned, designed to highlight local issues as well as those affecting residents across the ward. A couple of days previously, leaflets were dropped through letterboxes asking anyone wishing to talk to a councillor to put the leaflet up in their window: when performing the surgery, the councillors would then call.

Many topics were raised with Councillors Lodge and McGowan, most popular being the state of roadside trees and incosiderate/illegal parking on Thornbridge Avenue at the start and end of the school day. The councillors were able to assure residents that these issues would be addressed, in particular pointing to the comprehensive new £2 billion Highways Maintenance Contact, in which all roads and pavements in Sheffield will be renewed, and seventy-five percent of trees will be replanted.

Further roving surgeries are planned soon, for different parts of Birley Ward. These surgeries will be announced here first, so make sure you check back here often for news. If you’d like a roving surgery in your area, please contact one of the councillors using the information on their respective pages. If enough people contact us, they’ll be knocking on your door sooner than you think!


South East Oscars

Councillor Karen McGowan and Award Winner at South East Oscars
Councillor Karen McGowan and Award Winner at South East Oscars

Councillor Karen McGowan was proud to present the Award of Young Artist of the Year at the South East Oscars on Friday 7th July at the Town Hall. The event was to celebrate the hardwork and determination of young people in the South East of Sheffield. Councillor McGowan said “I feel it is really important to celebrate the achievements of our young people as they are our future and it was really impressive to see what fantastic talent we have got in the South East of the city”. Councillor McGowan also had the pleasure of meeting Daniel Smith who is a pupil at Birley Community College and is a Member of the Youth Parliament.

Birley’s Labour Team in Your Area

Your Labour team are in the Thornbridge Drive area on Friday between 4pm – 5:30pm. We’d love to hear from you on issues in your area. Look out for Bryan, Denise and Karen who will be walking around the area. If you’ve had a leaflet through to advise of the walking surgery, please display in your window if you’d like us to call.

Further ‘walking’ surgeries will be taking place across the ward; look out for details that will be published on the website and through leaflets in the individual areas.