3.6% fare rise gets short shrift

The planned 3.6% rise in fares next January has got a strong reaction from local Liberal Democrats.

LibDem councillor Malcolm Cowan says:

"Here in Welwyn Hatfield, we will be paying more for less. This line has always featured as one of the most expensive in Britain, a country which has among the highest fares in the world. Currently the operator Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) is being rated the worst in Britain, and from next year, our service is going to get slower, will be less frequent from some stations (Brookmans Park and Welham Green, less convenient (ending of trains to Peterborough) and in many cases the trains will have fewer seats than now.

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History repeats itself, first time as tragedy, second time as farce

History is repeating itself very quickly as yet again, many of the district's recycling bins are overflowing. Only a couple of weeks after LibDem councillor Malcolm Cowan highlighted the problem, both through the WHT and at a council meeting, the council's promises to fix the issue have turned to dust.

As of last week, almost every paper bin was full or overflowing, and also many of the plastics bins.

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Welhat waste and litter problems escalate

Local Liberal Democrats are angry about the local council's failure to empty recycling banks and are demanding improvements.

The large paper, plastic, glass and can banks have been full and overflowing for around a fortnight and are not being emptied. The council have admitted the company they use has just one lorry which is off the road. "It is astonishing that the council is dependent on such a small operation - did they know about this when the contract was signed, and why is there no backup?" asked LibDem councillor Malcolm Cowan.

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Lib Dems hold Three Rivers Council with landslide win

Cllr Phil Williams (picture right) with former Lib Dem leader Tim FarronThree Rivers Council remains in Liberal Democrat control following a landslide win with 64% of the vote by new Councillor Phil Williams; elected to represent Chorleywood South & Maple Cross ward.

The by-election was triggered following the sad passing of former Lib Dem leader Ann Shaw OBE who had been a well respected community champion and councillor for more than three decades. When she stepped down in 2016, she was the longest serving council leader in the country.

Our party increased their vote share by 4.6%, with the Conservative party running a paltry second place with 26.6% of the vote. The other parties failed to gain ground.

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New rail timetable under fire

Local rail operator Govia's draft timetable for next year is under fire from Liberal Democrat borough councillor Malcolm Cowan.

"In the previous round of consultation I pointed out how badly WGC and Hatfield would be faring compared with other less-used stations, and I am pleased that the borough council endorsed most of my comments, but nothing has changed. We now have real draft timetables and it is clear Govia have taken no notice.

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Splashlands Correction

Letter to Welwyn Hatfield Times


Dear Sir

With respect to the article last week about the ongoing delays with developing Splashlands, it is incorrect to state that I am a member of the Splashlands Procurement Board, though I did go to one of its meeting a couple of years back. What strikes me is the lack of progress since then - more meetings with 'providers' but not even a report to consider, so arguably the council have gone backwards.

The people of WGC and elsewhere in the district want to see conclusions and actions, not just words. Surely after nearly 20 years we have waited long enough.

Yours sincerely

Malcolm Cowan

Peartree LibDem councillor

No progress on Splashlands as meeting is ended after 14 minutes

the-empty-and-barely-used-high-ropes-course-at-stanborough-park.pngLiberal Democrats are frustrated at the lack of progress on a new Splashlands after a long-awaited meeting was ended after 14 minutes with no report to consider.

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Nigel Quinton backs Welwyn and Hatfield's community pharmacies

nigela-quinton-and-pharmacist-sarah-gaynor.pngNigel Quinton, the Liberal Democrats candidate for Welwyn and Hatfield, pledged his support for Johns and Kelynack Pharmacy and other pharmacies in Welwyn and Hatfield following an election campaign visit.

Nigel met pharmacist Sarah Gaynor and her team to see how community pharmacies are easing the pressure on the NHS by freeing up time for GPs and Accident and Emergency departments. Johns and Kelynack Pharmacy provides advice and support for local patients to help them to get the most benefit from their medicines and to lead healthy lives. It also offers services for people with long-term conditions, including ordering repeat prescriptions, medication reviews and free medicine deliveries.

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£56 million investment in Hertfordshire schools

The Liberal Democrats have announced they will invest £55.8 million more in schools and colleges in Hertfordshire over the next parliament as local schools face serious cuts under Conservative plans.

The funding would reverse cuts to frontline school and college budgets, protect per pupil funding in real terms and ensure no school loses out from changes to funding arrangements.

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Lib Dems penny for NHS would raise £126.6million extra for Hertfordshire

The Liberal Democrats have announced they would plug funding gaps for the NHS and social care by putting a penny on income tax, in their first major manifesto commitment of the election campaign.

The tax would raise an additional £126.6million for Hertforedshire, with £82million for the NHS and £44.6million for social care each year.

This is the party's flagship spending commitment and its first major policy announcement for the election. The Liberal Democrats manifesto will also set out a 'five-point recovery plan' for NHS and social care services in their manifesto.

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