Monthly Archives: September 2014

Petitiion for Moira Bypass gathers pace.

Owen Gawith Alliance representative for Downshire West

Owen Gawith Alliance councillor for Downshire West

In light of the worsening traffic situation in Moira I welcome our MP’s renewed attention to the problem.

However, as the long-time campaigner Neil Johnston has found, it takes more than a sporadic effort to get anything done.

To honour a promise made during the last local government election campaign, I have set up a petition to obtain 5,000 signatures to be delivered to Stormont. The petition is available at www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/moiraneedsabypass; it went live on 22nd September and has gained pace this week, approaching 400 signatures in just 4 days. The paper version I am presenting door to door each week has also gained around 100 with just a few hours work so far.

My thanks to all who have signed so far, and I would encourage people of every shade of political opinion to sign the petition as this is for everyone’s benefit. If anyone prefers the paper version or has concerns to air, I can be contacted via the local Alliance office on 92671177 

How to improve housing services for older people

Cllr Brian Dornan

Cllr Brian Dornan
Lisburn North
07775 429113

Speaking after a meeting of Lisburn City Council Planning Committee at which senior Housing Executive staff made a presentation, Alliance Party Councillor Brian Dornan welcomed the commitment of the NIHE Chief Executive, Mags Lightbody, to improving services for older people.

Councillor Dornan had commended the work of the Housing Executive and housing associations in making it possible for older people to continue to live in a home of their own rather than having to move to a care home but called for more innovation.

“Relatively simple services can be the key to making older people feel supported and less anxious”, he said. “Examples of what people would welcome are having a bag of rubbish collected from the door of their flat, and simple repairs such as lightbulb replacement. These tasks can be a worry and a problem for older people who may not have a lot of family help. Such services cost very little but mean a lot.”

Ms Lightbody had explained to the Committee that she had experience in a Scottish local authority of working in a joint housing and social services department. She would do all she could to encourage close working together of housing and health and social services. She agreed on the importance of services such as Councillor Dornan had suggested and said that she would be encouraging such developments by housing associations.

Brian Dornan
Alliance Party Councillor
Lisburn City Council

Dispute between Councillors about Planning Application at Richmond Drive

Cllr Brian Dornan

Cllr Brian Dornan
Lisburn North
07775 429113

Speaking after the Lisburn City Council Planning Committee meeting on Monday 2nd September, Alliance Party Councillor Brian Dornan said that he had been amazed at a most unusual response by unionist Councillors to the request of concerned residents of Richmond Drive and Richmond Mews to meet with planners about a planning application.

At the request of a number of residents Councillor Dornan had relayed their concerns to the Committee and the Senior Planning Officer had offered a meeting on Wednesday 10th September “in the interests of fairness”. Previously 21 letters of objection had been submitted. Concerns included the height of the houses and fences, adjacent as they were to bungalows.

“DUP and Unionist Councillors used their majority to vote to block the Planning Officer’s offer of a meeting”, said Councillor Dornan. “This included North Lisburn Councillors who should have respected their constituents’ wish for the meeting with planners. I have never observed such cavalier disregard for the rights of residents to have their concerns heard and such determination to achieve an instant decision in favour of a development. I am at a loss to understand how waiting until next week to allow residents to have their meeting was too much to ask.”

Independent Councillor John Drake had supported Councillor Dornan’s request.

Brian Dornan
Alliance Party Councillor
Lisburn City Council

McIntyre welcomes funding for environmental projects

Downshire East  https://twitter.com/AaronMcIntyre_

Downshire East
https://twitter.com/AaronMcIntyre_

Downshire East Alliance councillor Aaron McIntyre has welcomed the announcement from the Department of the Environment that the NGO Challenge Fund 2015 will receive £1.3 million funding from the carrier bag levy.

Councillor McIntyre said “There has been a 72% drop in demand for ‘single use’ carrier bags in Northern Ireland since the introduction of the levy which is fantastic for the environment. This equates to around 250 million fewer plastic bags. The recent £1.3 million pledged by the Department of the Environment to the NGO Challenge Fund will help to set up environmental projects that encourage the community to take an active interest in the natural and built environment”

“I would encourage local community groups, charitable trusts and schools to avail of this funding. There is increasing interest in environmental concerns and a number of issues have been widely reported on recently in the Lisburn area. The natural and built environments are a beautiful non renewable resource and it is great to see the money raised from a levy to protect the environment going back to the community”

Further information on the NGO Challenge Fund 2015 and how to apply can be found on the Northern Ireland Environment Link website and the deadline for applications is 3rd October.

An Alliance of Recipes

New cook book available for only £5.00. Pick up your copy from the Alliance office in Graham Gardens.alliance