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NWRAF (North West Rural affairs Forum)

Today I attended the North West Rural Affairs Forum, which was held in Kendal. The focus of the meeting was the question of 'Affordable Housing'. It was both a stimulating and interesting occasion and an opportunity for me personally to gain more of an insight into this issue and the variety of approaches in different parts of the North West.

It was particularly pleasing to hear reports on the significance and value of the 'Parish Planning' process and the centrality of public involvement in achieving the successful compilation of community plans.

'FormbyFirst' features in a new guide for Councillors

IDEAPub I was delighted earlier today when 'Using Social Media: A Guide for 21st Century Councillors' was published by IDeA: Improvement and Development Agency for local government.

The guide is available in two forms, either as a pdf file that can be downloaded or as an online version 'which is fully commentable, allowing you to add thoughts or questions to the different sections'.

This blog, along with other Councillors use of social media, is featured in the guide.

As the web site says:

The site provides information on why elected members and candidates should get involved in social media, along with advice and stories from councillors already using it.

Please go and have a look I hope that my blog continues to be an example of good practice, tell me what you think.

More Meetings

I have listed my recent and forthcoming meetings below:

  • Tuesday 16 March (afternoon) at Formby Swimming Pool with John Taylor of Sefton Arts and Leisure. As part of the preparations for this years 'MusicLive' Festival I have been talking to John about ways and means of adding more features to the Festival - A Sculpture Park in the grounds of the Pool may be a possibility.
  • Tuesday 16 March (evening) I attended the normal monthly meeting of the Formby Parish Council Finance Committee.
  • Tonight I'm attending the Area Committee to support an application for a grant towards the costs of  the MusicLive Festival.

Formby First Video

To counter balance the blog about graffitti I thought I'd add a short video showing some natural beauty found here in Formby.


Brewery Lane from Sean Brady on Vimeo.



Take a quick walk or cycle down Brewery Lane to see what I mean.

Have you got any videos you'd like to feature on this blog? Let me know.

FormbyFirst on Vimeo

I've set up a group for 'formbyfirst' on Vimeo. I'm trying to add visual content to this blog and I've chosen to use video. I hope you like these occasional videos.

Have you got your own online video account, perhaps on YouTube or some other video provider?

Are you happy with any of your video 'impressions' of Formby, write to me and let me know, I'll be happy to feature them here on this blog.

Unwelcome Graffitti in the village

GrafittiI have written to Sefton MBC to report an item of graffitti on the wall between Waterfields and Costa Coffee.

I hope they treat this as a matter of urgency, experience from elsewhere suggests that if an image is not removed quickly others follow.

I have also drawn it to the attention of the staff in Waterfields.

Have you seen this 'tag' anywhere else in Formby, please write to me and let me know.

Catching Up

I've been busy and neglected this blog, here is a list of some of the things I've been doing recently and a couple of events later this week:

  • Thursday 18 February a preparatory meeting with the Sefton Officer supporting the Formby Business Partnership
  • Sunday 21 February I attended the Installation Service for Rev Sue Smith now of Hightown and Great Altcar
  • 24 February - 1 March visiting 40 Commando, Taunton
  • Tuesday 2 March I attended the normal monthly meeting of the full Parish Council
  • Thursday 4 March I attended the Rural Issues Group Meeting for the Liverpool Diocese
  • Friday 5 March I attended the Formby Business Breakfast Forum at Range High School, there was a good turn-out for the meeting
  • Today 8 March (2.30pm Library) I will meet with a representative of the EST(Energy Savings Trust) and other colleagues to take the issue of the Formby Carbon Footprint project forward
  • Later 8 March (5.30pm) I will attend the Music Live group meeting at the Cafe D'Art
  • On Wednesday 10 March I will Chair the next meeting of the Formby Business Partnership, this will be held in the Formby Deli
  • Later in the evening I am addressing the St Jerome's Parish Union of Catholic Mothers, I'll be describing the work of a Parish Councillor.