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Mystery meet

I would like to know if anyone was invited to the ‘public workshop’ last Saturday regarding Sainsburys in Dorridge.

I would like to know if anyone was invited to the ‘public workshop’ last Saturday regarding Sainsburys in Dorridge.

I live in Dorridge and only had the leaflet on Tuesday, July 13. Sainsbury’s sent an extra leaflet apologizing for the late delivery (hmm) and extended the deadline for request to attend the workshop to the Wednesday, July 14 rather than Monday July 12. I telephoned to show my interest and asked where the workshop was to be held.

Surprise, surprise! I was told they had not decided on a venue and when I enquired as to how anyone would know of the details of where and when, I was informed that a ‘cross section of the community’ would be selected and informed by phone’. However, I have not met anyone who has attended the workshop,or heard any news either of the meeting or the outcome.

The suspicion now, is that was this workshop kept a secret so that only those who approved of the existing plan would be invited so that the quote could read “there was an overall approval of the new plans”? I hope that Solihull Planning not close their eyes to this.

I am not against Sainsburys in Dorridge, but I am not in favour of the size. Before huge out of town stores were built, Dorridge was a thriving village with a diversity of small shops. If Sainsbury wish to put something back into village community, a smaller supermarket plus a variety of independent shops would be the ideal.

M.Hawe Dorridge


Signs of chaos

I note from the SMBC advert on page 63 in the Solihull News this week that speed limits of 50 mph on various roads comes into force on July 30, 2010.

For the Solihull Bypass dual carriageway section it says :- “This section of the bypass is currently unrestricted...” It says something similar for the other roads affected.

Are the 50 mph signs now erected illegal? Why were they put up too early? Is this not a waste of police and court time if they stop and book a motorist legally doing the higher limit your notice says is currently in force?

I think an inquiry should be carried out. If these 50 mph limits, on some roads where it is patently stupid, for ‘road safety’ why are roads like Field Lane in Catherine de Barnes still de-restricted? (Field Lane is a short single track road, with no passing places, where 30mph would be too fast!)

Richard Taylor via e-mail


Ward confusion

REGARDING the travellers camp off Monks Path Hall Road, I read with great amusement that a nearby resident ‘phoned Lorely Burt with the news. Is this person so politically illiterate that they do not know their MP is Caroline Spelman and they live in the Meriden Ward? No wonder the country is in the mess.

Linda Brown

Devitts Close, Shirley


Academy fears

It was agreed by Liberal Democrat and Labour members at last Full Council that concern over the Academies and Free Schools Bill, and the impact it may have on education for children in Solihull, be expressed to the Secretary of State, the Local Authority Leaders Board and the borough’s two MPs.

It was accepted that, in Solihull, whilst we do have a very good standard of education provision, there is still a wide gap in attainment across the borough which has not been narrowed much by the present Academy programme in Solihull, and that the new proposals could widen the gap further.

Members of the Liberal Democrat and Labour groups expressed concerns about a possible lack of democracy, transparency and accountability in the new Academies and Free Schools Bill.

They were worried about the legal and financial implications for volunteer governors of new Academies - suddenly faced with the responsibility not just for their school but for the land it stands on. Concerns were expressed about the admissions policies and also the needs of Solihull’s most vulnerable children.

Ensuring public money is equitably shared in these difficult times is paramount.

As we know now the Bill has been rushed through Parliament and agreed, although expressions of concern have been raised in the Lords very similar to those expressed by the Lib/Dem and Labour groups in Solihull and following the debate, the Lords have agreed that a number of amendments be put before parliament.

In line with their policy of encouraging more community engagement, Liberal Democrats are committed to giving whole school communities the opportunity to debate whether theirs should register for academy status in an open and transparent way.

I firmly believe this bill needed closer scrutiny because I subscribe totally to the Council’s policy that ‘Every Child Matters’.

Coun Jean Hamilton

Chair of Education Children and Young People Scrutiny Board



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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