Newton on the Moor Parish Council

Way barred to public park

CONCERNS have been raised about access to Vyner Park during Swarland Show.

Coun Vera Vaggs told last week’s meeting that an ‘unpleasant’ man on one of the gates would not let her and Coun Carol Rogerson into the park to drop off things for the event last year, despite being given previous permission to use that entrance.

Coun Vaggs said: “I took my usual cake round for the tea tent and Carol went down with me to help to carry things. And we were prevented from going in from the gate on the back road by a man who stood tall and said we couldn’t go in.

“Two days before I had been talking to a man who I presume was an official on the show committee. I said I hoped I would be able to go in that gate and he said it would be OK.

“But this man was standing there like he was the keeper of the gate. He was very unpleasant and said we couldn’t go in that way. We were absolutely furious. I just said I am coming in this way and he was really nasty about it.

“I have decided that I am not going to the show any more.”

But she added that no one has the right to stop people accessing Vyner Park at any time.

Coun Suzanne Stanley, ex-secretary of the show committee, said there had been a misunderstanding on the day and was asked to apologise to Coun Vaggs on behalf of the current chairman.

Coun Mike Shirley added that another resident was also prevented from accessing the park that day.

“Another woman was almost attacked by this guy,” he said.

“She didn’t want to go to the show, she wanted to take her dog for a walk and this guy became really nasty about it.

“You cannot stop Swarland residents from using that land, whether it is for the show or not.”

Coun Stanley added: “You do have to have different conditions in place on that one day of the year.”

Council chairman David Rixon said: “We need to make sure that instructions are clearly given to the people on the gate on show day in the future.

“If people want access it must be given, it is a public space.”

DETAILS of meetings attended by county councillors are not published, the parish council heard.

Coun Vera Vaggs asked if the parish would be able to find out about the number of meetings attended by county councillors.

But a letter from the council states that the number of meetings attended by county councillors is not published on the county’s website as different councillors are on different committees and therefore attend a different number of meetings.

YELLOW signs directing traffic on the A1 to a caravan exhibition at Percy Wood Caravan Park have been removed, the council heard.

A stop sign to remind drivers entering and leaving the site has also been put up after requests from the parish council.

CONCERNS were raised about the cost of new noticeboards for the parish.

The council had been looking at replacing an old noticeboard in The Square in Swarland and putting one up in Old Swarland.

But clerk Lisa Hamlin told the council that a wooden board would cost around £1,200 while an aluminium one would be about £500.

After debating the concerns the council decided to tidy up the current noticeboard in Swarland with a new piece of wood and not to put a board up in Old Swarland for now.

Coun Mike Shirley added that residents from Old Swarland use the board in the Square.

An old sign which called the council Newton on the Moor instead of Newton on the Moor and Swarland is also to be removed.

THE council has received an apology after it was not notified about roadworks on the A1.

Aone+, the group responsible for the road, said the failure was down to staff changes.

It added that there was breakdown in communication between the company and Arriva during the works which led to a temporary hold on the bus service but it was resolved.

They also apologised for the inconvenience and said they were trying to carry out the work with minimum disruption.

A DONATION of £50 was made to the Great North Air Ambulance. Donations to Action for Children and the Alnwick Playhouse were deferred to next month’s meeting.

l LIGHTS in the Square are to be replaced after being damaged.