BRIERCLIFFE - Wind turbine plans in spotlight

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PARISH COUNCIL – Briercliffe Parish Council held its September meeting at the Community Centre in Jubilee Street, Harle Syke, on Monday. Present were Coun. Roger Frost (chairman) and Couns Meeks, Bailey and Kelly. Also attending were County Coun. Margaret Briggs, PC Sarah York, PCSO Rachel Lonsdale, Mr Steve Watson (clerk), Mr John Greenwood (allotments), Mr Michael Greenwood (lengthsman) and the public. Apologies were received from Couns Lishman, Royle, Thomas and Prince.

PUBLIC QUESTIONS – Questions were asked about plans for two wind turbines at Banks Farm, Lane Bottom. As the leader of the parish council’s Planning Committee is ill, other members had not seen the application. As there is considerable time to respond, the chairman will ensure members can study the application before they respond.

A question was asked about the Parish Signs Project and when the remaining signs would be put up. The clerk said most of the signs had now been sponsored and offers of sponsorship are still being received. Members agreed money in the account be spent to enable work to continue soon.

The issue of locating a “Briercliffe” sign at the Widdop boundary was raised. No stone had been put in place although one was available. As Widdop is also a county and borough boundary, it was thought these bodies should be told of the parish’s plans. The chairman will undertake the work.

POLICE REPORT – PCSO Lonsdale presented the police report which covered August 15th to September 19th. There had been 124 reported incidents and 19 crimes, up on the same time last year. There had been three incidents at the Veolia plant in Widow Hill Road – a fence had been cut in mid August; diesel had been stolen from vehicles and a portable cabin broken into and its safe stolen.

Several crimes involved bikes: a Polaris quad bike has been taken from Burwains Farm; two high-value mountain bikes have been taken from Sutton Avenue; another mountain bike has been stolen from a house in Shore Avenue and two racing cycles, helmets and glasses were taken from Todmorden Road, Briercliffe. The Shore Avenue crime took place on September 5th and it is thought the bike may have been taken by a scrap dealer. Police warn the public they should be aware scrap dealers have been seen and valuable items should not be left unattended.

Briercliffe Bed Centre, on Briercliffe Business Centre, was broken into on the night of September 8th-9th. A valuable mattress and van were stolen but the thieves must have cut themselves as blood was found at the site and is being tested.

There were a number of other crimes. Most were opportunistic and police advise residents be responsible with their possessions.

PACT – The police reported on last month’s parish council priorities. Regular patrols have taken place at the waste disposal site, leading to the arrest of a potential thief who may have been after discarded electrical equipment. Sita will now disable such equipment, rendering it valueless. The owners of a number of illegally-parked vehicles had been ticketed. Reports of juvenile nuisance have declined. New priorities are to be patrols near Briercliffe School and the recreation ground.

COUNTY COUNCILLOR – Margaret Brindle consulted the parish council about signs informing lorry drivers to use the turning circle in Burnley Road rather than come out of the business centre and turn left in to Burnley Road. Similar advice may be given for drivers entering and leaving Holgate Street. The parish council will consider the problems at its next strategic planning meeting and ideas will be forwarded to LCC.

There is a proposal to put double yellow lines in parts of Netherwood Street. Residents will be consulted.

A “no cold calling scheme” and Neighbourhood Watch scheme are operative in the Queen Street, Duke Street, Jubilee Street area.

Members of the parish council shared the chairman’s concern about the time taken by a utility company over work in Burnley Road. Traffic has been affected by broken traffic lights, bus stops closed and pedestrians inconvenienced. The clerk has already contacted contractors about damage to council property. Residents have also been told the other side of Burnley Road is to get similar treatment. The chairman asked the county councillor to convey their concerns to the highway authority.

GRANT – The parish council voted to make a small grant to Briercliffe Residents’ Association to buy bulbs to plant at agreed sites this autumn. Requests for information about small grants to local groups can be made to the clerk.

WORK PROGRAMME – The parish council agreed to a programme of work to the unmade part of Harrison Street owned by the parish council, the installation of a sign referring to the council’s allotments waste disposal site and work to identify a site in Harle Syke to erect storage containers. Members also agreed, in principle, to increase the capacity of the garages for rent at the turning circle on condition finances can be arranged.

MACMILLAN CANCER SUPPORT – On Friday, from 10 a.m. to noon, Hill Lane Baptists will participate in the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning, in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. The day after, from 10 a.m. to noon, the parish church will hold a similar event at the vestry in Church Street, Harle Syke. All welcome.

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