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November councillor’s report


November has been a busy, but productive month.  It has been affected at the very end by a family bereavement.  There has been a lot going on in the ward, and I have felt I have spent less time in the Civic centre and more time out and about, which what I like to do.


I attended the November meeting of the Transport Management Advisory Panel (as a non-member) to raise concerns about the Hartland Road markings, I was unable to attend cabinet to support the petition but Cllr Orton spoke in place of me and the lead petitioner.

I also attended the Reading 2020 event, which was an interesting chance to look beyond the short term and think about where our town should be in 2030.

I attended the SACRE meeting, which is the body that oversees the provision of Religious Education in our schools, where a lot of discussion was the impact that national government will have on the SACRE – and that the council looks like it will be no longer providing an administrative support for this, despite it being a stuatuory body.
I also met with the pupils from the Whitley Excellence Cluster School councils who were meeting the Mayor in the Civic centre and listened to their ideas for their schools.

Out and about in the ward:

We held our regular monthly surgery at the beginning of the month at the South Reading Youth and Community Centre.
I visited the Madjeski Academy on “National Non fiction day” to see the work done by students under the guidance of two great illustrators – one who illustrates the horrible histories and one who illustrates pop up books including the gruffalo.
I also visited Christ the King primary to see their plans for a new specialist centre for children with autism, that will serve children from across the borough.
I was at Sure start for their art exhibition and for their open day, along with our new candidate Kelly Edwards, and had a good chat with members of staff and other parents at the centre.
I also went along to meet the Mum and Tots group on Kennet Island and to let them know that I was pushing the developer to get them some playground equipment.

Labour party and campaigning

Our big news in Whitley is that Jim has decided to retire as a councillor.  Jim has been a really welcoming comrade since I was first selected as a candidate over a year ago.  The Whitley Labour party branch has selected Kelly Edwards to stand for election in May and I have been out campaigning with her and introducing her around the ward.  It’s great working with her and I really hope she is elected to join our team.

I’ve been out campaigning in other wards too, including Church ward with Paul Woodward, our excellent candidate there.

We’ve had a big push to get the Reading Labour party newsletter out and we’ve started delivery of the pre-Christmas Whitley newsletters.

Looking ahead to December:

The very sad personal situation is likely to reduce my activity in December a bit and of course over Christmas there will be some family time.  However there is still lots to do in the ward and around town, I will keep you updated.  Take care if the weather stays as it is.

I won’t be blogging as regularly as usual for the same reason but I will still be working hard for Whitley!

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