Petition launched to protect Silverwood nature reserve

John Healey MP, Wickersley councillors and Silverwood Colliery Heritage Group are working together to try to improve Silverwood Nature Reserve and have launched a petition to urge the landowners to do more.

The former Silverwood Colliery site has become a much-loved green space with trees, a lake and thriving wildlife.

But there are problems with off-road vehicles causing serious damage and anti-social behaviour.

Local groups and volunteers are working hard to protect the area and have called on Ogden’s, the landowner, to protect the perimeter with fencing and boulders.

John Healey MP said: “Cllr Hoddinott and I first contacted Ogden’s in the Autumn but after the board considered it the company sent a disappointing reply in January saying they didn’t want to spend money securing the site because they believed it would be vandalised.

“I don’t want the firm to dismiss residents’ concerns so I met with Ogden’s managing director this week and he’s agreed to a site visit to see the problems for himself.

“So we are talking, which is positive, but we want to send this company a strong message about how much local people value the reserve and want to see it protected.”

Cllr Hoddinott said: “The issues on the pit site have got worse over the last few months, and we are really disappointed that Ogden’s won’t do anything to prevent the quads and 4x4s getting on there as they are causing a lot of damage.”

Bob Boyle, of Silverwood Nature Reserve Support Group, said: “The group would like to protect the reserve for humans and wildlife alike, but to be successful in those aims the reserve needs a secure perimeter and hopefully the owners will see the sense and value in that.”

Sign the petition by clicking here.

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Wickersley Library investment set to begin

Wickersley Library

In our budget last year, we set out Labour’s plan to invest £1.4 million to improve libraries across the borough. And despite the challenges of Covid over the last year, that work is already underway.

Works at Wickersley are expected to begin from February 22nd which means that the library will be out of public use from that point, including for Call and Collect services, until they are concluded.

The additional investment will fund a new reception counter, ICT and study space, cafe area, smart screen and projector, and new furniture to allow flexible use of the space.

Labour’s budget proposals for the coming year also include a commitment to reverse cuts to the Libraries Book Fund, which will mean more newer books available to library users. And of course we’ve already scrapped library fines.

We want to see thriving, modern libraries that serve our communities, and we’re looking forward to seeing ours after its facelift. Sadly that’s in contrast to the approach that the Tories have taken nationally, making cuts that have closed 800 libraries across the country.

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Road safety measures taken

new automated speed sign on Brook Lane at Bramley

We know that road safety remains a top priority for local residents, and there are a number of actions we’re currently taking forward on your behalf:

  • The long awaited extension of the 30mph zone along Brook Lane should come into force this month, helping to slow down traffic on its way into the village.
  • Additional signage will go up Sycamore Avenue and Fleming Way as part of Labour £450,000 Neighbourhood Road Safety Fund.
  • We’ve used part of our devolved ward budget to purchase two more speed activated “slow down” signs, planned for locations of Sycamore Avenue and as a permanent replacement for the current temporary signage on St Johns Avenue, where residents have raised concerns with us.
  • Work is still on-going to develop a signalised crossing on Morthern Road close to Wickersley roundabout, just outside our ward but in a location that residents have asked to be considered. As Labour councillors we’ve committed additional money for more siganlised crossing over the last few years.
  • Consultation will take place with local residents about a possible 20mph zone being installed on the Listerdale estate, where residents have expressed concerns about vehicles travelling too fast along the residential streets to cut the corner from the main road. We’re also looking at whether further measures could help to reduce rat running.
  • And we continue to support out local PCSO’s community speed watches which have continued in a rather more solitary way under Covid rules than they used to!

At the same time, our £24m to ’24 programme of investment is taking out potholes and smoothing road surfaces to make them safer for everyone. If you are driving, please do have consideration for other road users.

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Who should be our resident of the month?

You can find out which fab local person was our resident of the month back in December by clicking here to visit our Neighbourhoods blog.

To make a nomination, please e-mail Neighbourhood Co-ordinator Claire Moseley at claire.moseley@rotherham.gov.uk with the following information:

· the nominee’s name
· where they live
· any contact details
· a summary of the impact the person has made

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Sunnyside Community Centre security measures

New measures in place to the rear of Sunnyside Community Centre

Regular readers will remember that last year we committed part of our local devolved budget to support additional security measures at Sunnyside Communtiy Centre. The building has had problems with youths climbing on top of the building, causing problems for those using the centre and putting their own safety in danger.

We’re pleased to be able to confirm that the £3,400 donation has been put to good use and the new measures are now in place.

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