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Tax shocker

THE reorganisation of the old Hockley Heath Parish into three separate Parishes is proving a financial disaster for the majority of their residents.

THE reorganisation of the old Hockley Heath Parish into three separate Parishes is proving a financial disaster for the majority of their residents.

Parish Council Tax which originally was a very modest sum will shock a lot of Hockley Heath residents when they get their April council tax bills. Their parish charge goes up 89 per cent to £94.22 at Band D on top of the £28 (2.2 per cent) increase from Solihull itself.

Over at Dickens Heath it rises to £44.34 a massive 116 per cent increase.

The one saving grace comes for Cheswick Green residents who get a five per cent reduction but they will still pay £46.63 and most don’t get any benefit for this.

The majority of residents in Solihull benefit from not having a parish council and we are reminded that it was this association back in the 1980s which vigorously campaigned against proposals to extend Parish Councils to other areas.

Trevor Eames

Secretary – Solihull Ratepayers Association


Tax dodger

MERE days after a national newspaper revealed the Conservative Party has ploughed more than £55,000 into its campaign to unseat Lorely Burt MP, we learn Lord Ashcroft - who’s funded most of the project from his own backpocket - is a “non-dom” and avoids paying UK tax on the bulk of his income. This issue goes well beyond mere residency: to achieve that status, Ashcroft had to convince tax officials his primary loyalty was to another country.

Worse, he has continued to claim this opt-out for a full 10 years after publically promising to adopt “permanent UK residence” prior to entering the House of Lords.

Might I ask Conservative candidate Maggie Throup how she feels about benefiting directly from what many will regard as a secret tax dodge?

Steve Green



Not that bad

In reply to G Lloyd’s claims ( Letters) , that Solihull had a Conservative MP and a Conservative government that ‘cared not a jot for the people who had voted them in’, the very opposite is true.

John Taylor was a fine MP who took the concerns of his constituents seriously. The previous Conservative government under John Major might have had its problems but they shrink into insignificance compared with the horrors of the current Labour administration.

G Lloyd gives his address as Knowle- in the constituency of Meriden, where we have an excellent Conservative MP, Caroline Spelman , who has served us extremely well for nearly 13 years.

The point is that a vote for any party other than Conservative in Solihull , Meriden , or anywhere else , risks perpetuating five more ghastly years of Gordon Brown .

John Courtenay


Knowle Conservatives


Well done

ON Thursday, February 25, my wife and I were just finishing our shopping at Morrisons in Shirley, when in the car park at the back we saw an elderly lady with an elderly Mini just leaving her car to go in.

Glancing at the car I realised the exhaust pipe was hanging on the floor, due to a broken bracket.

I told her this and she didn’t know what to do. I said the exhaust needed to be tied up and I would get help.

I being an elderly “superman” dashed back into the store and spoke to customer services, and was told to “go and find a fella”.

The first lad I found, Daniel, understood the situation, got a piece of wire and was in the car park like a shot. Within minutes he had secured the exhaust saying he was happy to help. The lady was delighted.

It was wonderful to be able to help and to have such a positive response from the store. Well done Morrisons and your most pleasant staff.

Malcolm Turner

Chairman Shirley Residents Association & Shirley Institute.



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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