THE Stratford Mop of 1914 appeared little changed from previous years. Wartime austerity had not yet set in and few people foresaw that the conflict would be lengthy. One of the great traditions of the fair was its roasts. No less than five oxen and seven pigs were rotating on the spits outside the pubs on the big day. The excursion trains brought their usual hundreds of revellers from Birmingham and other centres of population. None of Stratford’s conscripts had yet embarked overseas, although just five days before, a regular with the South Wales Borderers, Sgt RH Savage, had been the first Stratfordian to fall victim to the war. He had been struck by shrapnel at the Battle of the Aisne and died of his wounds in Bournbrook Military Hospital.
Four years ago Ellis Holtom, of Stratford-upon-Avon, was born with half a working heart. Later, the Herald featured his condition as a tribute to the work of Birmingham Children’s Hospital where he was treated. Now, to mark Congenital Heart Defect Week his mum, Vicki, updates his story. . .
ALL 326 local planning authorities in England, councils like Stratford-on-Avon District, need a local plan. The core strategy is a component of that local plan. It contains all the local district wide policies that need to be considered when processing planning applications. New development needs to satisfy local needs, helping to realise the hopes and ambitions of its communities and protect them from situations they fear. New homes and places to work should provide then with a healthy lifestyle, a pleasant place to live, good recreational facilities and above all the infrastructure that enhances their quality of life. The buzzword to describe this is ‘sustainable’.
THE poor are paying more than they should be for their energy, according to damning new evidence from Stratford-upon-Avon’s Citizens Advice Bureau. Prepayment meters (PPMs) are costing users in fuel poverty a “disproportionate amount” for what little gas and electricity they can afford, the bureau has found. There are around 7.2 million people on prepayment meters in the UK and several thousand in the district of Stratford. Despite Stratford’s reputation as an affluent area, the bureau is being forced to come to the aid of more and more people living in fuel poverty on an increasingly regular basis.
A NEW £1.7 million footbridge with two lifts will be installed at Stratford-upon-Avon Railway Station by the end of the year, it has been promised.
Work on the new disabled access bridge was initially due to start in October 2013 and it was supposed to be in place by ‘Summer 2014’.
Although there is currently no sign of the bridge, Warwickshire County Council said it has already been built off site.
Network Rail have delayed bringing it to the station because of technical issues over the installation between them and the building company, Dyer and Butler Ltd.
But the rail company has promised the council to deliver it by the end of 2014, and at the very latest, by 12th January.
The majority of the bridge has been paid for by a £1 million grant from the Department for Transport’s ‘Access for All’ scheme.
The other £700,000 was provided by Warwickshire County Council, Network Rail, and London Midland.
Complete with two lifts that can hold 16 people each, it will be located eight metres further down the platform than the existing footbridge, which is being kept due to its historical value.
In early 2013, residents in Stratford were asked to vote for one of three designs proposed by Network Rail.
The ‘heritage’ style, pictured, beat both the ‘standard’ and the ‘modern’ style.
The recent state of Stratford’s railway station has angered many in the town who feel it is an unsuitable doorway to a tourist town.
After poor staffing levels led to a four-day closure of the ticket office, a working party of local councillors and London Midland representatives was set up last week.
The station has been short two members of staff since London Midland cut 150 jobs in March.
But London Midland’s Head of Snow Hill services, Brenda Lawrence, said two jobs for the ticket office are now being advertised on the train company’s website, and urged Stratford residents to apply.
Another issue highlighted by rail users is the glare on the automated ticket machine and last week London Midland promised to spend £1,300 fitting a “daylight view screen” to the machine.