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  • CCS focus March 2017 Page 1
    Article: Mar 24, 2017
    By Nigel Whitburn
  • CCN focus March 2017 page 1
    Article: Mar 24, 2017
    By Nigel Whitburn
  • Mike Sole Speed limits
    Article: Mar 23, 2017
    By Alex Claridge in Kentish Gazette 23 March 2017
  • C&C LD Logo
    Article: Mar 23, 2017

    This morning James Flanagan spoke on BBC Radio Kent's Breakfast show about the plans for the council merger and put our position forward. Segment starts from 1:32:20 here.

  • Canterbury Jan 2017
    Article: Mar 23, 2017

    Cllr Nick Eden-Green puts his vision across for our area:

    Locally the city council must put its own house in order before going for massive reorganisation. For example over the last few weeks I have been trying to get SERCO to replace the paper waste insert in my bin which they damaged. After 3 emails to SERCO and the council, someone came to my door with an open crate to use temporarily as the bin inserts are out of stock. Great. Putting paper in an open crate in the March winds is a guarantee that my paper waste will litter the streets. That means, you guessed it, more work for SERCO. Then they will eventually come back a second time with the correct insert and take the crate away. Who pays for all this? We do as taxpayers. Get it right first time and stop moaning about lack of money.

  • surgeon hospital doctor medical medicine
    Article: Mar 21, 2017
    Canterbury Liberal Democrats have slammed the Government's failure to provide enough extra cash for the NHS in the Spring budget, warning that local services - such as the K&C - will struggle to cope with growing demand.
    Ahead of the budget the Liberal Democrats called for a £4 billion funding boost for NHS and care services this year. That would amount to an extra £7 million for local NHS services in the Canterbury and Coastal area, and £52 million for social care across Kent. The Budget announced by the Government will instead see the share of national income spent on the NHS fall in the coming years.
  • EU Citizens Right to Stay
    Article: Mar 17, 2017
  • Europe Day of Action March 2017
    Article: Mar 12, 2017

    The Government urgently needs to rein in its attempts to use the thousands of EU citizens living across the UK as bargaining chips in Brexit negotiations.

    People from the EU make a huge contribution to our local economy and society. Recent figures have shown that EU citizens across Kent, Surrey and Sussex include over 800 doctors and 5,500 nurses. Across the South East, over 8,000 EU nationals work in social care.

  • Europe Day of Action March 2017
    Article: Mar 6, 2017

    Canterbury Lib Dems in town on Saturday 4 March for the party's European Action Day. Lots of other local parties taking part across the country. Great reception from people in Canterbury today, especially for our petitions calling for Britain to remain in the Single Market and for EU citizens to be guaranteed the right to remain in the UK.

  • The Gentil Knyght
    Article: Feb 25, 2017

    The Gentil Knyght which was shut in April last year has been plagued with problems ever since. Cars have been burnt outside the derelict pub, windows smashed, the back door forced open and the inside vandalised. It has been used as a playground by youngsters, and neighbours fear that it is only a matter of time before there is an accident, squatters move in or it is burnt down. Following an urgent request from your councillor, Michael Dixey, Canterbury City Council has taken action to ensure that the developer secures the site. The developers have submitted a second planning application following the refusal of their application last year to demolish the pub and build six three-storey houses on the site. The reference for the new application is CA/17/00149. Let us know what you think of the revised planning application

  • Article: Feb 24, 2017

    'It has been extensively rewritten but virtually none of the concerns raised by residents have been addressed', says Lib Dem Cllr Nick Eden-Green. 'Furthermore no councillors and no committee were involved in making these changes. The local plan steering group, which was supposed to oversee them, has been deliberately bypassed by the Conservatives in a desperate attempt to get this flawed plan back on track. It is already over a year late.

  • James Flanagan at Westminster
    Article: Feb 23, 2017

    Responding to today's reports that the Urgent Care Centre at Kent & Canterbury Hospital is to close, James Flanagan said, "The threat of closure to this much needed service is very worrying - especially as our area is growing."

    "Canterbury District already has a population of 157,000. Over the next 15 years, 15,000 houses will be built under the local plan, which could see a further 30,000 people across the district."

  • Michael Dixey
    Article: Feb 23, 2017

    Extracts from Mike's response at this weeks full council budget debate:

    This is a horrible, horrible budget - it's all about cuts, cuts and more cuts.

    I don't think that any of us here tonight stood for election to this council so that we could slash public services - but this is what we are doing here tonight.

  • Nick Eden Green profile
    Article: Feb 23, 2017
    The Gazette sent out a free guide to Canterbury and Thanet with last weeks paper. It listed some of our museums under the heading 'Get your hands on local history'. Top of the list was the Beaney in Canterbury with its 'topics such as the ancient Egyptians......and Greek artefacts'.
    Not exactly local history! Yet there was no mention of the Canterbury Heritage Museum which is stuffed with fascinating local history.
    The City Council is determined to shut the Heritage Museum. Why? Because it doesn't attract many visitors. Small wonder. It is never advertised, even under a specific local history listing. The prices have been raised to £8 for an adult whereas the Beaney is free. The displays haven't been changed in years. It's a bit hidden down a side street and it's not even signed from the Beaney. All this is perfect recipe for closure.
    If you are interested in local history go and visit it. Better still sign the petition to keep it open.
    Cllr Nick Eden-Green
    Lib Dem Wincheap Ward
  • C&C logo
    Article: Feb 23, 2017

    Canterbury Council is being very short sighted in thinking that tourists come to Canterbury for anything other than our history and our visitors follow in the footsteps all the Pilgrims who "went on pilgrimage" from the 12th century onwards.

    The Poor Priests Hospital was founded in 1240's with, it seems, Simon Langton heading up the fundraising. It cared for the elderly and infirm priests of Canterbury but now houses the Heritage museum which showcases the history of our city and its inhabitants over the years.

    A couple of years ago the Tories introduced new "opening hours" for the museum (which closed it for half the year) and then upped the entrance fee. There has been little publicity for the museum; limited signage or directions to it and there are never any enough publicity leaflets available at the council run Tourist Office - which only opens 6 days a week anyway! Given all these facts Its obvious that visitor figures would decrease.

    To close this museum and say the exhibits can move to the Beaney is not acceptable. Already the exhibits from the Buffs Museum have largely gone and residents have told us that the council is looking to sell other museum exhibits which are hidden away in storage as there is no room at the Beaney for them.

    If the Tory run council is keen to save this museum one answer could be for the Heritage museum to copy the Seaside Museum in Herne Bay which is "run entirely by volunteers through an independent Trust in partnership with Canterbury City Council " - to quote their website. Plans are also afoot to run the Whitstable museum along similar lines.

    Or they can follow the council officers' plans and close it.

    For starters I'm more than happy to collect the names of everyone who would volunteer their time at the Heritage Museum: or phone 01227 750 146.

    And please remember the council consultation runs until next Wednesday March 1st on Canterbury Councils website so there's still time to have your say.

  • Martin Vye
    Article: Feb 19, 2017

    On Thursday the 9th of February the Liberal Democrats on Kent County Council succeeded in making a change in the County Council budget.

    Martin Vye, Canterbury county councillor and Liberal Democrat spokesperson on the county council, said: "The Conservative administration presented the budget, said 'It can't be changed now, take it or leave it'. But we looked at the figures very carefully. There was no way, given the cuts the Government have inflicted on local government, that we could make a big difference in the money for education or social services. But we found a way to re-route half a million pounds to a service that will make a big difference to our most vulnerable fellow-residents."

  • James Flanagan and Mike Sole - Calais Camp
    Article: Feb 16, 2017

    The decision to backtrack on providing sanctuary for 3,000 unaccompanied refugee children is shameful.

    Last year, Save the Children estimated there were 26,000 lone child refugees in Europe. Some had been separated from their parents by war, others had been orphaned, and all of them were at serious risk of exploitation, violence and disease.

  • Litter
    Article: Feb 11, 2017

    We are organising a litter pick on the London Road Estate on Saturday, 18th February. Are you able to help?

    If you can join us, please meet at the Gentil Knyght at 10.30am. We will supply litter pickers, plastic sacks and high-vis vests, but please wrap up warm.

    We aim to finish at midday, with a team photo for the newspapers followed by refreshments.

  • James Flanagan at Westminster
    Article: Feb 11, 2017

    My letter in the Kentish Gazette this week in response to MP Julian Brazier's article last week:

    Julian Brazier paints a very rosy picture of our future outside the European Union ("Time to fulfil our promises", February 2nd). This view is not only far from certain, but one that puts him at odds with his constituents, the majority of whom voted to remain.

  • Martin Vye
    Article: Feb 10, 2017

    "We are nearing breakdown in essential services" says Martin Vye, Canterbury county councillor, and the Liberal Democrat spokesperson for education and children's social services.

    "We have a situation where the Conservatives running Kent County Council are being forced to make cuts they don't want to make by their fellow Conservatives in the Government in Westminster. £5million is having to be lopped off education, which means there is less money to help the vital effort to support schools and help them achieve better results for our children.

  • Andrew Palmer
    Article: Feb 9, 2017

    Andrew Palmer - Lib Dem candidate for Canterbury City North in May's County Elections, takes the Tories to task over funding fears.

    Tory Councillor Neil Baker has kick-started his very own Project Fear - if we don't get a Mega-Council, he says, the bins won't be emptied, the streets won't be cleaned, parks and museums will close, and Park & Ride will end.

  • Canterbury Side Street Jan 2017
    Article: Feb 2, 2017

    Canterbury Liberal Democrats have launched a petition calling for a local referendum on the merger of four East Kent councils.

    It follows last week's publication by the City Council of the 'business case' for Canterbury, Thanet, Dover and Shepway councils to merge into one 'mega council' before 2019.

    Local Liberal Democrats have since condemned the plans for the merger, calling them illogical and undemocratic.

    "The arguments in favour of this merger are far from clear," said Lib Dem group leader Michael Dixey. "Canterbury councillors already represent more residents per head than most councils. A merger could treble this number, making it more difficult for local councillors to deal with issues or properly represent local residents."

    "Residents are to be given no say in this decision. At the very least it should be decided by a local referendum."

    Commenting on the financial impact, Lib Dem Cllr Nick Eden-Green said, "The merger will cost almost £7m up front. Ashford have already pulled out of plans for an East Kent merger. We are told we need to save £8m between 2018 and 2024, but nobody knows how realistic this figure is. Even the business case for a merger is uncertain."

    As well as calling for a referendum, Canterbury Liberal Democrats have today published a briefing outlining reasons why they believe the planned merger doesn't stack up.

    If you agree with our call for a referendum please show your support by signing this petition. Many thanks.

  • Nick Eden-Green
    Article: Jan 28, 2017

    The title of this article is taken from this weeks edition of the Kentish Gazette (26/01/2017) in which Cllr Nick Eden-Green shared his vision for the future of Canterbury:

    Canterbury is a small tight knit historic city with two world heritage sites, a brilliant range of shops, theatre, music, lectures, universities. It's a privilege to live here and I'm passionate about where I live.

  • Canterbury Focus Jan 2017
    Article: Jan 20, 2017
  • enhanced care photo
    Article: Jan 5, 2017

    Canterbury Liberal Democrats have revealed that the Government's plan to allow Kent County Council to raise council tax will only raise a small proportion of the council's social care budget - just 1.2%.

    This means that older and disabled people will still face a massive shortfall in funding needed.

  • Traffic South Canterbury Dec 2016
    Article: Dec 22, 2016

    A Christmas Quiz from Nick Eden-Green

    The decision to build 4000 houses in south Canterbury was made by Conservative councillors largely from the coast and the villages. Before the planning meeting a tour of the site was arranged. I asked if we could be shown how cars, buses and cyclists would get around. This was refused. As a result I don't think those councillors understood the implications. How many of the public do either?

  • Traffic South Canterbury Dec 2016
    Article: Dec 14, 2016

    Tonight the Canterbury City Council planning committee approved the application by Corinthian to build 4,000 houses on green fields on South Canterbury.

    Ida Linfield, Lib Dem campaigner said "The committee heard many good and honest reasons to reject this but the majority chose to ignore them. They also ignored the valid arguments of residents' associations from all over the city, from Bekesbourne and Bridge Parish Council and from The Canterbury Society".

  • James Flanagan and Tim Farron
    Article: Dec 8, 2016

    Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate, James Flanagan, would win Canterbury and Whitstable if the party repeats the swing it achieved in the recent Richmond Park by-election.

    Lib Dem Sarah Olney overturned a 23,000 Conservative majority with one of the largest swings to the party in its history - which would hand over 150 Conservative seats to the Lib Dems. This prompted the party's leader, Tim Farron, to declare to Conservative MPs: "We are coming for you."

  • C&C logo
    Article: Dec 2, 2016

    It is extremely concerning that the £35million deficit faced by East Kent Hospitals Trust could mean further downgrading at Kent and Canterbury Hospital. It is equally concerning that the chancellor did not address the financial crisis faced by the NHS in his Autumn Statement last week.

    Whilst the Trust faces an unenviable task in trying to balance the books, it is essential that Canterbury is not overlooked as a major centre for specialist services in East Kent.

  • Tim Farron speaking at Christchurch November 2016
    Article: Nov 24, 2016

    Following a successful visit to our constituency yesterday, Tim Farron shared his thoughts on the experience:

    "It was fantastic to meet so many enthusiastic members from Canterbury Lib Dems yesterday. I was able to have a good chat to most of those who attended, and I truly feel that James and our local council candidates have a really strong and dynamic team to support them in the run up to next year's local elections.

    I was also delighted to be invited to outline the Liberal Democrats' post-referendum vision for our country at an event at Christ Church University. The last time I spoke there was when I visited as the only Liberal member of an otherwise socialist NUS exec board, so it was especially great to get such a warm reception and some brilliant questions from last night's audience!

    But a real highlight of the day was visiting the Thanington Resource Centre and seeing the amazing work done by Paula Spencer and Cllrs Charlotte MacCaul and Nick Eden-Green to provide much needed community facilities for their local area.

    And that is what the Liberal Democrats are all about: localism, getting stuck in, and priding ourselves on working hard for our communities all year round."

  • James Flanagan at Westminster
    Article: Nov 17, 2016
    James Flanagan comments on Julian Brazier MP's recent comments in Parliament about the Article 50 ruling - which can be found here.
    "Julian Brazier's assertion that judges are looking to interfere is simply wrong.
    Their decision two weeks ago did not stop Brexit. Nor did it say anything about negotiations with the EU. Nor did it overturn the referendum result.
  • car parking meter
    Article: Nov 13, 2016

    The Council has voted to continue with plans to sell off Hawks Lane and Rosemary Lane car parks, reports County Councillor Martin Vye.

    As many of you will know, your Lib Dem councillors have been fighting these plans along with local residents and businesses. But we have been out voted by the ruling Conservative group.

  • Full House!
    Article: Nov 11, 2016
  • C&C logo
    Article: Nov 10, 2016

    This year's Liberal Democrat Annual General Meeting will be held on:

    Wednesday 30 November, 7:30 p.m.

    at St Paul's Parish Centre, Canterbury CT1 2NH

    Members Only

    The minutes for last years AGM will be available at this years meeting, together with written reports from the officers. We will be emailing these out to all members whose email addresses we have in advance of the meeting. However, if you can't attend the meeting and want copies please let us know.

  • Nick Eden Green profile
    Article: Nov 8, 2016
    Developers Pentland have had their 'modern vision' for 52 houses signed off by Canterbury City councillors.
    Whilst the developer's modern scheme was criticised for deviating markedly from the original plans, it nonetheless gained approval from the planning committee by nine votes to one.
    Lib Dem Cllr Nick Eden-Green, who represents Wincheap and voted against the scheme, and was quoted in the Kentish Gazette saying "It does not in any way reflect Canterbury and Canterbury suburbs, or any other part of the district I have seen…Innovative, yes it is, but innovative does not necessarily mean good, and I'm not convinced it does on this occasion."
  • Brexit Talk CCCU Nov 2016
    Article: Nov 4, 2016

    On Friday 11 November James will be speaking at The Centre for European Studies at Canterbury Christ Church University. The event starts at 4pm - full details attached. hope to see you there!

  • Tim Farron
    Article: Nov 4, 2016

    Tim Farron, leader of the Liberal Democrats, is to visit Canterbury on 22nd November.

    As part of his visit, Tim will be speaking at Canterbury Christ Church University on the Liberal Democrat's post-referendum vision. The ticketed event, co-sponsored by the University's Centre for European Studies, will be free and open to the public. It will commence at 7pm at the Powell lecture theatre, with refreshments available from 6.30pm.

  • Article: Nov 2, 2016

    Plans are being drawn up to merge Canterbury City Council with the four other East Kent councils, Thanet, Dover, Shepway and Ashford.

    Consultants have been asked to advise on the viability of a merger. The driving force behind these plans is to save money.

    If the merger goes ahead, this mega council would be responsible for 750,000 residents. It would not be a unitary authority, as Kent County Council would remain largely unchanged. However, there would no longer be a Canterbury City Council as we know it, and the number of local councillors would be cut by around two thirds. This mega council's main offices could be in Folkestone, Dover, or Margate.

  • Focus Team Ida Linfield, Michael Dixey & James Flanagan at Cranmer House
    Article: Oct 31, 2016

    The final decision has now been made by the council to downgrade their 'enhanced care' schemes for the elderly in the sheltered housing at Cranmer House, Whitgift Court and Collard House in Canterbury. Most of the staff providing this much needed support are being made redundant.

    "The decision was both unfair and divisive" said James Flanagan "as only one of the three schemes will now have an overnight support worker every night - despite the majority of residents voting for it, and other support is being dramatically reduced!"

  • James Flanagan
    Article: Oct 22, 2016

    Tomorrow morning, James will be back on BBC Radio Kent discussing the latest topics with Lembit Opik. 11am to 12pm. Tune in if you can!

    If you miss it and want to listen to the podcast you'll be able to download it (and listen live) here!

  • Quiz night
    Article: Oct 15, 2016

    There' a couple of weeks left to book your tickets for our annual quiz on Saturday October 29th from 7.30pm at St Dunstan's Church Hall

    (80 London Road, Canterbury, CT2 8LS)

    Tickets are £6.50 per person. A table of 8 pays only £45 (any extra quizzers on the table pay full whack!). Discounts are available for students and children - call on the number below!

  • Kingsmead Field October 2016
    Article: Oct 10, 2016

    On Sunday James joined local residents and the Save Kingsmead Field campaign to celebrate the Council's decision to afford village green status to the field.

    The campaign to save the field has been on-going for five and a half years. In 2011, Canterbury City Council planned to sell the whole field for development. Local residents formed a campaign to fight against the plans, and earlier this year a compromise was reached - the Council will develop 20% of the land (at the back of the field) but protect the remaining 80% as a village green.

  • World Mental Health Day
    Article: Oct 10, 2016

    Mental health is just as important as physical health. Yet, it so often receives less resource and attention. In the UK alone, 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health illness in their lifetime. 1 in 10 young people will experience a mental health problem, and 1 in 10 sufferers say they face discrimination. We need to end the stigma of mental health and make sure it isn't treated secondary to physical health. Let's take part in Time to Talk Day today.

  • Canterbury Street Stall July 2016
    Article: Sep 27, 2016

    Our Autumn campaigning starts this coming Saturday, October 1st.

    We are running a street stall in Canterbury opposite Marks & Spencers from 10am until 2pm.

    We will have two petitions on the stall: one calling on the government to guarantee EU citizens the right to stay in the UK, and the other demanding that the Erasmus study programme be protected.

  • James Flanagan
    Article: Sep 16, 2016

    James Flanagan has been re-selected as the Liberal Democrat candidate to fight Canterbury at the next election.

    A former city councillor and Lib Dem candidate at the last election, James was selected unanimously at a recent meeting of the local party.

    "I am very proud to have been re-selected to stand for Canterbury," said James. "Clearly 2015 was a very difficult time for the party, but I am determined to stand again as it would be a huge honour to represent my home town."

  • Lib Dem Conference Directory September 2016
    Article: Aug 23, 2016

    Canterbury and Coastal Liberal Democrats are hosting their pre-national conference event at Bekesbourne Village Hall, 10.30 am to 12.30 pm, on Saturday 3rd September.

    At the event, we will be discussing the policy motions on the agenda for the party's national conference in Brighton, which takes place later in the month.

    Our meeting gives local members the opportunity to hear about these policies, but also to propose any amendments to their wording. If local members agree on an amendment, the local party will send this to the conference committee which then decides whether it should be debated at conference.

    Our meeting on the 3rd is a good way to hear more about Liberal Democrat policies, how they are made, and how to influence them!

    Policy motions at national conference this year include:

  • springlanecanvassing
    Article: Aug 22, 2016

    It's time to let you know what your local Lib Dem teams and councillors have been up to in the past couple of weeks:

    Clear skies and warm weather, as the Canterbury Lib Dem team went door knocking on Spring Lane Estate:

    We delivered and collected surveys, asking local residents for their views on a number of issues. Issues such as the availability of affordable housing, the care available to elderly people, and the balance of funding between mental and physical health.

  • Mike Sole - Grass Cutting Reduction August 2016
    Article: Aug 4, 2016

    News that Kent County Council is proposing to reduce grass cutting from 8 times to 5 or 6 times a year has been slammed as irresponsible by Lib Dem campaigner Mike Sole.

    "Just a few years ago our verges were cut up to sixteen times a year," said Mike. "In future years it is proposed to be less than a third of this. Long grass on the verges and overgrown hedgerows restrict vision for drivers and obscure pathways for pedestrians and cyclists."

  • By election results since May - July 2016
    Article: Aug 1, 2016

    Following the success of the local elections earlier this year, where the Lib Dems gained the most seats (45) of any party, the Lib Dem revival continues to show promising progress:

    It's been a superb effort from local campaigners up and down the country. But there's still a lot more to do.

    Your local Lib Dem councillors and focus groups will continue to fight the issues you tell us are important. And we'll do this all year round, not just at election time.

  • Canterbury Street Stall July 2016
    Article: Jul 28, 2016

    Lib Dems launch campaign to save Erasmus programme for Canterbury students

    The Liberal Democrats have launched a campaign to safeguard access to the Erasmus exchange scheme for hundreds of students in Canterbury. A petition has been launched that urges both the government and EU leaders to preserve Erasmus opportunities for UK students in the coming Brexit negotiations.