Felton parish news

A LONG-RUNNING bid to repair a bridge in Felton is still rumbling on.

The structure over the Back Burn has been damaged for a number of months, but because it forms part of a private road, the parish council has been trying to help residents get it fixed.

But tracing the owner has proved to be difficult.

The council believes that the land is owned by Felton Park Estates and has written to Lady Talbot about it, as well as solicitors Dickinson Dees.

But the council has been told that is not the case, although no documents have been shown to prove that.

Clerk Lisa Hamlin said: “I have told the solicitors that they should provide information to prove that Felton Park Estates is not the owner.

Councillors were also horrified to hear that stones which had been removed from the bridge had been crushed by Northumberland County Council.

Mrs Hamlin received a letter from the council saying that they had been retrieved from the river, taken to the Powburn depot and crushed as part of the area’s recycling process.

But the county said it will replace them.

Mrs Hamlin is to keep in touch with Felton Park Estates to try to find a solution.

County councillor Trevor Thorne added that he will take up the concerns with the county council.

BACKING has been given to improving junctions on the A1 following a meeting in Swarland.

Coun Thorne said he has taken concerns from the meeting to County Hall and the Highways Agency and is setting up a meeting.

He said: “Enough is enough. They always said they couldn’t do anything until there had been deaths. Well this little stretch of road has claimed too many lives.”

Chairman Coun Tony Hood echoed the concerns but added that residents were also to blame for some of the problems.

Coun Marion Clark added: “When the bypass was built in 1981 we asked for roundabouts and they said it wasn’t their policy. Two ticks later and how many roundabouts did they put in up at Berwick?”

Coun Thorne will also be taking a delegation of residents from villages surrounding the A1 to speak to the county and Highways Agency.

ANGER has erupted over a planning application which was refused.

Councillors unanimously backed the conversion of St Mary’s Church in the village into a family home.

But at a planning meeting, the application was refused as officers felt it didn’t do the internal features justice.

Coun Thorne said the planning committee was given a strong message from Peter Rutherford, north area development manager, that the plans did not respect the inside of the church.

But Coun Hood said: “I think that application was very sympathetic compared to some church conversions I have seen across the country.”

PLANS to take over land in Felton giving space for a new doctor’s surgery have been given another set back.

Land at the end of Benlaw Grove was transferred to the county council from the Highways Agency and was then due to be passed to the parish.

But this week the council was told that not all of the land will be given, meaning plans for a new surgery would have to be scrapped.

Councillors think the county may have got the wrong area for the land and are to write to them about it.

WORK has started to clear land at the Riverside.

Following a letter to the parish council, Brenda Shutt has started to spruce up the area and a bench has been put in.

Councillors said Mrs Shutt is doing a good job.

ALLOTMENTS are being prepared for residents.

Brambles have been cleared from the site and the ground is ready.

Mrs Hamlin is to ask new tenants if they will Rotavate the soil themselves in return for the first year free.

PLANNING applications are to be sent to the parish council in paper and electronic format.

After concerns that some documents are too big to be downloaded at the slow speeds received in the village, Mrs Hamlin spoke to the county council to resolve the situation.

PLANTING has taken place for Felton in Bloom.

Spring judging for Northumbria in Bloom will take place next Wednesday .

Coun Clark said things were ‘progressing slowly’.

A LITTER pick was held in Felton last weekend.

Young and old turned out to help clean up the village.

Coun Clark said that year on year there are less bags of rubbish being produced from the clean-ups.

l OBJECTIONS are to be submitted to plans for a wind turbine at Rivendell in Swarland. The council originally opposed the plans, which have been resubmitted moving the turbine location, but they are to resubmit them.

l COUN Thorne has given the parish council £7,500 for traffic calming in the village.

l THE next meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 8, at 7pm in Felton Village Hall.