This is a letter to the editor from Parish Councillor Ken Hulme in response to the letter from Councillor Garth Harkness.

‘It is difficult to know just what Cllr Harkness is getting at or what his complaint is. Is he really complaining that I helped to organise a private meeting with our MP, senior Oldham Councillor Jean Stretton, senior staff at Oldham Council and Unity Partnership, representatives of Oldham Traffic and local community police plus leading members of Delph Community Association to discuss long standing traffic issues in the village?

Well what is the problem? For years now local residents have complained about the state of traffic in the village and outside our local school. They have clearly stated in response to a questionnaire their wishes for a 20 mph speed limit in the village, better signage on Delph Bridge, a school crossing outside Delph School and enforcement of the 7.5 weight limit on lorries passing through the village. For five years they have been ignored by their local Oldham Councillors who seem to oppose all road safety measures on increasingly crackpot ‘heritage’ grounds.

Now with a new MP and a new administration in Oldham I’m glad to say these issues are no longer being ignored. I also see from tonight’s (Thursday’s) Chronicle that at last action is being taken on Slackcotes Lane – another example of work being halted at the behest of our local OMBC councillors on spurious ‘heritage’ grounds.

I am very grateful to Debbie Abrahams, Cllr Jean Stretton and all the police and council staff who gave up an early Friday evening (without overtime for Council or Unity staff) to participate in a very constructive and positive discussion about  solving the traffic problem in our village. Cllr Harkness seems to think these sort of issues should only be discussed by a sub committee of a sub committee of Oldham Council – and one which is seem by most who  attend it as an ineffectual talking shop that never gets anything done but goes on talking forever.

We don’t need more council bureaucracy to get things done. We need local residents meeting with Council Staff, Traffic Police and where necessary our MP and senior OMBC councillors – on the ground, in the villages that have the problems –  sorting things out.  That’s what I understand by ‘localism’. Hopefully that’s what we started doing in Delph – and once more my thanks to Debbie Abrahams MP and Councillor Jean Stretton for all their efforts.’

Ken Hulme is the Independent Parish Councillor for Delph Ward.

The views and opinions expressed in letters to the editor do not represent the views and opinions of the the editor. Letters may be edited.



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