March Letters

March 13 2013

Readers' letters in March

Readers' letters in March


Homes worries

Having just viewed the plans on the Knightstone website I am rather concerned about the parking right on the corner between the proposed out and in roads. I personally think they are trying to put too much in to the area of land available. Also the flats will be overlooking St Andrew’s Church.

It doesnt take a genius to work out the level of respect that will NOT be shown towards people attending church services on a Sunday.

Pete Holcombe


The issue for me would be conflict with vehicles coming from the A38, even if they are on the other side of the road.

Sean Walsh




I question why they need garden space for children when they have the Elm Park right at their doorstep. The 3 bed flats is good because it means families will be moving into an area with mostly families.

Wajid Hussain



Lower payments

I am sure that readers will be interested to know about a recent change to the Council Tax that has not been widely reported. 

The change is that from this year taxpayers can spread their Council Tax payments across 12 monthly instalments rather than the current 10 payments. 

Of course, it won’t change how much households pay overall, but a move to 12 instalments would lead to a smaller amount being paid out every month. 

To get payments switched to 12 months, residents should contact their council as soon as possible as many don’t seem too keen to publicise this change.  In these tough economic times I think residents have a right to know, and I have contacted South Gloucestershire’s finance officers and urged them to include information on how to switch to monthly payments when they send the bills out.

Councillor Adam Monk

GP surgery fears

My wife and I are among the many (1,500?) patients affected by the impending closure of Elm Lodge Surgery.

We were informed of this by Concord a few weeks ago.

We were therefore interested to read your article on this matter in the Filtonvoice February issue, and the letter from a fellow patient.

There are a few "facts" and statistics in the letter from Concord and your article which seem worthy of comment.

1 The letter from Concord. "60% of you .... in the last
year have been to our main branch ...".

This suggests that 40% did NOT go to Little Stoke, ie presumably attended Elm Lodge. This makes the surgery extremely important and critical.

2 As reported in your article:

a) "Over the last 18 months Concord has looked for alternative suitable premises.

i)How is it that WE have only just been informed?

ii) There are several unoccupied retail premises at Northville, of which at least two are larger than Elm Lodge.

iii) Surely Concord must have been aware of the duration of their current lease when they took over Elm Lodge surgery when Dr Redmond retired.

b) "We are fortunate to have two alternative practices within a few hundred yards."

i) Who is "we"?

ii)The alternative practices are, in reality, nearer half a mile from Elm Lodge and, of course, much further for those patients who live near Southmead Road. For those who are able to walk that distance this is only a minor inconvenience. Many others are not so fortunate, and no direct public transport links are available.

For anyone who has need of medical care or assistance, continuity in the NHS service is essential. I am sure that many residents of Northville and its neighbourhood are, to say the least, dissatisfied with the impending situation forced upon them.

AJ Steadman

Broncksea Road


Airfield fight

"Lord of the Manor" ... Tim Shorland’s claim to the "mines and minerals" beneath Filton’s "closed" airfield runway has taken a significant step forward in preserving this National asset.

Combining with Bristol boxing promoter Tex Woodward, who shares similar rights with Tim on other parts of the airfield, they have discovered a resounding "body blow" to eager developers intent on saturating the  airfield with upwards of 3000 homes.  This will certainly have to be put on hold indefinitely until the legalities of this revelation have been substantially resolved.

Through acquiring the mineral title to this prestigious airfield site they are requesting to uphold their legal rights to test-bore the runway to explore the prospects of "shale gas" beneath it.  In a process known as "Fracking" it could provide a very substantial fuel source to generate much needed electrical energy at very low cost.

It is currently operated in Northern parts of the UK and extensively in America.  The Government Inspector, Paul Crysell will be returning to South Gloucestershire Council in March to consider an additional land supply that could add to the Council’s Core Strategy.  But he will not be considering the airfield site.  That I understand from a Council source is not an option.  He considers it ... closed! I am not included in that examination.

It is an established fact that the cessation of aircraft activity on this renowned airfield site and its replacement with housing is completely out of character with the neighbourhood.  It would simply add to the town’s traffic difficulties particularly at peek times. Filton’s road structure cannot cope with the present capacity without adding more.

Additional support in this fight to save the runway is coming from the "Charlton Village Green Committee" in nearby Henbury.  "We want our village back," they are demanding.

It was acquired through a compulsory purchase order to extend the runway in 1946.  Appreciation in housing values over succeeding years would have added considerably to the village value contributing to descendants’ benevolence had it remained intact.  It caused anguish and regrets when it was initially undertaken.  There were no "disturbance allowances" in those far off days.

We are NOT accepting the matter lightly.  Our efforts will continue until a satisfactory conclusion has been reached.

Clr Douglas Daniels