The Lancashire villages of Hesketh Bank, Becconsall & Tarleton

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Safety Crossing in Tarleton

I am writing to express my grave concern at the absence of safety crossing in the village of Tarleton.

Due to the excess volume of traffic generated by the new developments in and around the village, it is now highly dangerous attempting, as a pedestrian to cross the road where the Coe Lane, and Hesketh lane traffic join the Church Road opposite the retail outlets, new eating places, and from Booth’s.

My concern is I have almost had a near accident due to cars converging on these places when attempting to cross the road… Is there a reason for no crossing in the centre of Tarleton?

I have spoken and emailed my concern over the last two years. So much so, I have advised my family that in the event of a road accident by a car, bus or lorry they must sue the Council.

I feel very strongly about this negligence on behalf of the Council, and fail to understand their reasoning or ignoring of this dire need.

Pat Northall, 18th August 2015

House on Plox Brow

As you will be aware the demolition taking place on the old Pillow Talk mill
is well under way.  There will be approximately 94 houses on this site.

I live directly opposite the site in a Park home at Meadow Park.  I am
seriously concerned about the impact the heavy machinery is having on my
property.  At times the vibrations are so severe my ceiling lights and the
crystal glasses in my cabinet move so what is happening to the foundations?

Plox Brow has no pavement and is really not wide enough for 2 cars to pass
easily so imagine how it is with these huge Hurt wagons, and heaven forbid
if you happen to meet one of these wagons.  The drivers actually wave their
hand for you to reverse even if it would be easier for them to do so.  We
are all senior citizens on our site and one of us did actually reverse, they
felt pressurised which resulted in a garage bill of £435 due to a big stone
not visible in the position they were in.

I shall be contacting the council asking for a reduction in council tax, do
you envisage that I shall be successful.

Kind regards
Mrs Margaret Lomas, 23rd august 2014


Dear Sir

In reply to Susan Langleys letter, welcome to Hesketh Bank.

The wagons and tractors that you speak of are the life blood of our village, and are very important to many, many people who earn their living in and around the village growing plants for your garden and food for your table. 

The tractors, trailers, and wagons  on our roads have been driving these routes and roads for many, many years, I think you will find in all fairness that they do use the moss roads where possible and that a massive percentage of speeding traffic on Hesketh Lane is down to CAR drivers.

Yours faithfully,
Mrs J. Parker, 19th August 2014


Dear Sir

We moved to the village just a little over 7 years ago from Southport in the hope of finding some rural peace of village life. Not so, over those 7 years we have seen an influx of very heavy traffic upon Hesketh Lane from large produce lorries to the tractors with trailers.

You almost take your life into your own hands when attempting to cycle up or down Hesketh Lane as the lorries and tractors speed by incredibly close. I have been driven to cycling on the pavement in order to avoid a collision which is not totally satisfactory as the pavements can be quite narrow in places. I have become increasingly uncomfortable now in pushing my one year old grandson along the road because of the speed these vehicles are travelling at.

The large tractors with their trailers are particularly intimidating, especially following the incident with the bus shelter outside Booths earlier in the year. I know that some roads have been designated at 20mph and there is a 'smile face' matrix sign towards the top of Hesketh Lane, but it would appear that these tractors are immune to those signs.

Are there any plans in place to take this traffic off Hesketh Lane and if so when is it likely to happen. If not are there any plans in place to get these tractor drivers to adhere to a safe speed on Hesketh Lane?

Yours faithfully
Mrs Susan Langley, 17th July 2014


Dear Sir,

Please see a photo of the road surface taken today. You will hopefully be able to make out the failure of repeated temporary fixes leaving the re-enforcing wires of the sub structure dangerously exposed. Over the last two months this and similar potholes have been repeatedly notified to Lancashire County Council by more than one resident but the response to date has been a warning traffic cone placed at the side of the road.

3rd world roads in Lanacshire

The damage to the road surface extends to the full width of the carriageway so road users cannot avoid traveling over it. Some of our moss roads are now deteriorating so quickly they are becoming impassable in anything other than a HGV or Tractor and even they run the risk of the road collapsing and sliding into the ditch. Boundary Lane at Hundred End is predicted to catastrophically fail anytime soon, endangering lives for the want of a bit of maintenance.

Our Council Tax is higher than the average (LCC 2013/14) and we have even been in the somewhat surprising position to 'benefit' from a rate reduction of 2% this year so, whilst things might be tight, financial restrictions cannot be the problem.

Why the third world roads then? Road maintenance must have had an adequate budget but perhaps it has been impacted by erecting 20mph signs (£9.2m) and paying out record compensation claims to drivers (£1.3m) rather than being used to fix problems in the roads themselves.

Is LCC is actually in the process of abandoning selected 'B' roads altogether? If so can we please not do it by stealth but properly with official road closures, permanent diversions with Ordnance Survey and sat nav updates for the emergency services and foreign HGV drivers.

Yours faithfully,
J. Ball, 25th July 2013


Dear Sir,

About a year ago, I moved to Tarleton and was surprised by the sign outside the above pub which encourages the people of the village to use the car park even when not patronising the pub. As this is so unusual, I thought there may be a historical reason to do with covenants of the land I wondered if any of your readers may know if this is the case. Occasionally when dropping my child off at school the car park has a car parked across the entrance which prevents parents of the neighbouring school from parking there, putting many children's lives at risk due to how busy Church Road is. I wonder if those responsible realise that they are endangering children's lives. Today I turned up and the car park is blocked with a car right across the entrance. I find this a most unusual business practice, as this obviously angers many locals who then go on to boycott the pub which leads me back to my original question of whether anyone can shed any light on the reasons why the pub has a notice inviting residents to park there when not patronising the pub.

Yours faithfully,
Elizabeth Savage. 19th October 2011

New Lane Pace Road closure

So New Lane Pace is closed for several weeks, blocking the 2 bus route to Southport. Is there anything on the websites of Lancashire County, West Lancs, Radio Lancashire, or the bus timetable sites? No.

Are there helpful diversion signs? No.

A friend drove almost to Banks before seeing anything. (Though I did enjoy the joker who picked up the blown over sign opposite The Old Bank and replaced it directing traffic into the Booths carpark.)

As with the 20mph proposal first legal notice, Hesketh with Becconsall doesn't exist in the eyes of our district and county officers.

Ian Wells. 12th October 2011

20 mph limits

If you check the new orders, two changes have been made. First, Hesketh Bank has been included with Banks and Tarleton in the title and at other relevant places so this is now a valid document.

Second, Hesketh Lane and Station Road have been quietly added out of alphabetical order at the end of the specific roads schedule so now are included as 20mph along their whole lengths.

So basically all the core areas of both villages are proposed to be 20mph all of the time, including the through routes and bus routes.

However, you can speed up as you leave towards Southport on Blackgate Lane, Gorse Lane, and Moss Lane, passing significant numbers of houses, and at the outer ends of Coe Lane and Church Road, both just before the traffic lights onto the A59. Oddly, you can also speed up along Boundary Meanygate, though it won't do you a lot of good unless you're visiting there as you can't drive the second half of it out to Taylor's Meanygate. Even more oddly, you can still be heavy footed in the whole of Mere Brow and in Holmeswood, even outside the schools.

You might wonder why major parts of the roads most subject to heavy commercial vehicles are excluded from this scheme.

If you wish to object to, or support, the proposed orders, you can write to The County Secretary & Solicitor, Lancashire County Council, PO Box 78, County Hall, PRESTON PR1 8XJ [Quoting ref: LSG4/5.43212/SLO/8/3/ME1] before the 20 September 2011.

Ian Wells. 15th September 2011

Proposed 20mph speed limits for Tarleton, Banks & Hesketh Bank

Dear Sir,

The draft Order and associated documents for proposing to make many roads in Tarleton, Hesketh Bank and Banks subject to a 20mph speed limit may be inspected at West Lancashire Borough Council, 52 Derby Street, Ormskirk, L39 2DF and at Lancashire County Council, Christ Church Precinct, County Hall, Preston PR1 8XJ.

The documents may also be inspected by visiting the County Council website at

If you wish to object, or indicate your support for the proposal, write to The County Secretary & Solicitor, Lancashire County Council, P O Box 78, County Hall, Preston PR1 8XJ [quoting ref:LSG4/5.43212/SLO/8/3/MEI] before the 20th September 2011.

Yours faithfully,
David Rydings 12th September 2011

Proposed 20mph speed limits for Northern Parishes

Dear Sir,

I have been in correspondence with the Road and Transport Safety section of Lancashire County Council in Preston asking for further information about the proposed 20 mph speed limits being considered for the Northern Parishes.

In particular, I asked how this proposed limit would be enforced and sought clarification about the limit being proposed along the whole length of Hesketh Lane as it wasn't included on the list.

I was directed to this page on the LCC's own website.

What I was also told was that "The speed limits will be enforced by signs only. The behaviour and attitude of drivers will be challenged so that it will become socially unacceptable to drive at inappropriate speed in residential areas"

In addition I was informed that "The schemes will be policed by community road watch".

Finally, "Some schools on through routes will be subject to time variable 20mph speed limits"

I interpret the above to be read in the following manner:-

  1. Driver's will obey speed limits because a sign tells them to do so.
  2. Driver's will be challenged by civilian volunteers about their attitude if they speed and told that it is socially unacceptable exceeding the speed limit.
  3. Hesketh Lane will have varying speed limits at various times of 20 and 30 mph.

May I ask any reader does this sound like a well thought out solution to the issue of speeding vehicles in the 3 villages within the Northern Parishes?

You be the judge.

Yours faithfully,
David Rydings 1st September 2011

20mph Speed Limit Proposal

[Ref NEWS 19th July] Possibly a good thing, but:- even as a (long term) incomer I know that Hesketh Bank isn't Tarleton. Will these stand up in law if promulgated under a geographical lie?

Ian Wells, 22nd July 2011
Sidney Avenue (just into Hesketh Bank, not in Tarleton as listed in LCC proposals)


Dear Editor,

In response to V.Owens letter re: pavement parking problems, maybe I can be of assistance. As a Hesketh Lane Ward Councillor I was recently approached to try and resolve a particular problem with obstructions on the pavements which cause difficulties with pedestrians within this vicinity.

What I can do is to formulate a leaflet which can be put behind the wipers of cars parked inconsiderately. I usually find that most people respond positively and don't really realise that they have been causing someone problems and are therefore willing to co-operate once they are aware of the situation.

The fact that the parking occurs on the narrowest section of Hesketh Lane exasperates the problem, so it does need addressing. I hope that this is of some assistance.

Yours Sincerely,
Cllr. J.E.Hodson Hesketh Lane Ward. 3rd May 2011


I am a Mum of three, and as a non-driver I walk a lot down Station road onto Hesketh Lane to take my children to TCP school. I would like to raise awareness to the drivers in this area who choose to park their vehicles partly on the pavement blocking the pedestrian right of way. This seems to be especially the case during the times of the school run when both vehicular traffic and pedestrian traffic is at its highest.

This method of parking simply isn’t safe for the children and parents of the area. The pavements are already incredibly narrow and the traffic flow is extremely heavy with many large vans and trucks as well as cars and even farm traffic.

What can be done to prevent vehicles being parked on the pavements? Having to take children and a pram onto the road itself to pass an obstructive car is not an acceptable solution for me, or many other affected parents/pedestrians. Crossing the road itself, can be dangerous and difficult enough during these busy times of day also.

I have taken many photographs of offending vehicles, I have knocked on doors to ask politely if a car can be re-parked off the paths and I have emailed the local P.A.C.T. team (and received no response!)

Being a full time Mum, with lack of time and childcare. I cannot make it to the P.A.C.T meetings myself to raise this issue.

Any suggestions from yourself would be extremely helpful to the safety of the village.

Thankyou for your time.
V. Owens. 2nd May 2011

Road Safety

Does anyone know if there is still a speed limit on Dibb Road, Hesketh Bank? When I first started walking down there nearly 30years ago there was a 5MPH sign which has since long gone.

The traffic now speed along this road with no attempt to slow down or acknowledge the fact that you have got as far off the road as you can to let them pass. There is a ditch along the side with gutters cut into the verge to drain the water off the road but as it is overgrown you can not always see where these are and can easily trip. If this happens when one of the big tractors is speeding past - which they do, with no attempt to slow down - there could be a nasty accident.

When it is wet you get covered in spray off the road and when dry you get lost in a cloud of dust. Not everyone drives like this or all the farmers, it would seem to me to be people that have only recently - say in the last couple of years - started using this road and think it is on a parr with Shore Road.

Margaret Price. 16th November 2009

Shore Road Repairs

Dear Sir, Many residents will have noticed the fenced off hole in the road near the junction of Chapel Road and Shore Road in Hesketh Bank and several residents have reported this to me. I would like to make the situation clear because this situation has existed since before Christmas. I drove past today and the hole has still not been repaired.

This roadworks has caused my self and the officers at County Hall a great deal of concern. Within 30mins of the problem being reported I had placed a cone on the hole and staff from LCC had arrived within the hour and fenced it off. On examination it was discovered that the subsidence which caused the hole was caused by a leaking sewer pipe belonging to United Utilities. They promised to repair it but despite many phone calls from County Hall have failed to do so. I had assumed that they had repaired it but was alerted some three weeks ago by a resident that they had not done so, I reported UU to the consumer council for water and also contacted UU and on the 3rd April was assured by UU that the work would commence the following Mon.I am appalled that they have not done so. I will contact both UU and the regulator on Tues and put in a further complaint.

I should not have been surprised by this incident because I am at present pursuing another complaint about UU on behalf of a resident that has been ongoing for at least 7months and have had to report UU to the regulator at least 3 times in the past.

Yours Sincerely,
County Councillor Malcolm Barron. 13th April 2009


Dear Sir

In response to the letter from Mr Flomer I feel I must express my sympathy, I have on many occasions had to report potholes in my area. The state of the roads in the Northern Parishes is appalling due to the lack of funds available. I have spoken many times at full council and committee about this with some degree of success. Regarding the particular incident that Mr Flomer refers to, I remember reporting an almost square hole opposite Websters around that time. This had possibly been caused by work done by a utility company which had subsided.

I would advise any one who has suffered damage to their vehicles to contact me as soon as possible and I will check out the hole, I have been able to obtain compensation in the past. and if Mr Flomer wants to speak to me my phone number is 01772 811302.

County Councillor Malcolm Barron, 19th February 2009


One Friday evening in October I was driving down Church Road in Tarleton when my wheel went into a pothole in the road opposite Websters. The wheel was damaged and I ended up paying over £500 to get the car recovered and the wheel fixed. I wrote to the council to ask if they could reimburse me or at least offer some compensation, and they have told me that because the road is inspected four times a year (and that this is considered to be adequate), and was inspected in July 2008 and found to have no defects, they deny liability under the Highways Act.

I took photos of the pothole as soon as I could (the Sunday following my accident) and can produce these, but I've been told that because I didn't take the photos at the time of the accident this is not enough proof that the hole was there on the Friday! How I am supposed to take pictures in the middle of the road on a dark Friday night and then get them immediately to the council I'm not quite sure. I have been told that if anyone else saw the pothole at the time and had damage to their vehicle then this could be put forward as extra evidence and this might make a difference to my case. Did anyone else have any problems?

J Flomer, 17th February 2009


Dear Sir,

I feel I have to write to say how dangerous the mini roundabout at Coe Lane is becoming.

This weekend we have lost a dearly beloved pet who was killed on the roundabout. However, although this has upset us greatly we have been worried about traffic here for some time now.

Living on the estate adjacent to the roundabout, one sees day in day out the potential dangers. Indeed I have myself and others witnessed cars screeching to a halt with near misses being an everyday thing. I have also witnessed minor accidents at the roundabout. Because of the ongoing "flooding"which makes the roundabout particularly hazardous, especially in bad weather, the road markings have faded.

I believe that soon there will be a serious accident here, if we do not do something about this. Do other readers agree with me? What can be done?

Marie Taylor, 21st December 2008

Road Signs ? Where are they?

I noticed a beautiful new sign this evening on the way home from Southport stating " West Lancashire has Everything"

I would agree if I saw 20 mph Road Signs in Tarleton especially near to schools and Road Signs requesting that drivers take care when entering Tarleton. Can someone please tell me why most neighbouring villages display such Signs when there are none in Tarleton?

I note that an earlier Posting ( July 2007 ) stated that a Crossing was requested by several District Councillor as far back as 2003. What progress has been made please on this matter?

Joyce Rydings, 17th April 2008

Hiding their bus under a bushel -
New Bus Service to Ormskirk

I passed a 202 Stagecoach bus on Hesketh Lane destined for Ormskirk. I understand that it will connect with trains at Burscough Bridge. But where is the attendant publicity campaign advising the residents of Tarleton and Hesketh Bank?

Bob Robinson, 26th February 2008

Speeding Traffic

Dear Sir,

I write in support of Joan Clark's letter (5th Feb 08).

Like her I am also heartily sick and tired of the speed of traffic on the main roads of Tarleton. If the roads were winding then the situation wouldn't arise. Our forefathers built long straight roads over a flat landscape and I suppose they were built before most of the houses were. Little did they anticipate in those far off days that the average mode of transport in the 21st Century would be able to travel over a mile a minute.

Therein lies the problem. We have made progress in one way but not in others. Vehicles can be scrapped and new ones made without much effort. The same cannot be said for the roads they travel along (except the actual surfaces).

So what is the solution to this ever growing problem? More Policemen? More Speed Cameras? Speed Bumps? Lower Speed Limits? Limitations on the numbers of Cars? Doubling the cost of Petrol? I could go on. These actions though are draconian and could lead to a police state. Do we really want that?

The same goes for holding a mobile phone whilst driving a vehicle - apart from it being a danger to others it is also selfish in the extreme.

It is similar to speeding - having no consideration for others. Don't misunderstand me Joan, I'm definitely not saying we should tolerate the inconsiderate and selfish actions of a minority. Far from it.

As I said in my first sentence I'm as fed up as most of excessive speeding on the roads in Tarleton. Doing nothing though is also not an option. So where does that leave us? Putting up with it; ignoring it; moving house to the middle of nowhere? NO.

Working toward improving attitudes; pestering those in authority to take action; politely reminding those who offend to be more considerate of others are just some of the ways we can make a difference.

Can anyone else come up with another solution?

Yours faithfully,
J Johnston, 9th February 2008

Arrogant Drivers

Dear Editor, I am very fed up with the blatant breaking of the speed limit and use of mobile phones whilst driving, by drivers on Hesketh Lane , Tarleton. Morning, noon and night this goes on. It’s all very well having one GATS camera, but surely it would be more sensible to have the forward facing ones that show the oncoming driver and whether he or she is on the phone. People are SO arrogant about flouting these laws, and something must be done before there is a fatality. This, sadly, is just waiting to happen. It seems every kind of driver uses the phone when driving, from rude women who think they are above the law because they drive an automatic, to lorry drivers and bus drivers. The latter can be seen most days somewhere in Tarleton.

One camera really is not sufficient. Most speeders do so between Moss Lane and the secondary school where speeding drivers, surprise, surprise, slow down to under 30. I am a driver myself and, much to the annoyance of some drivers behind me, do keep to the speed limit.

Something really needs to be done.

Joan Clark, 5th February 2008

Traffic and Road Problems

Would it be helpful to involve our MP, David Borrow in finding a solution to the above? He attended a Christmas Fair in the village last weekend and has regular surgeries Here. Has anyone considered contacting him and asking that he lead a campaign concerning our issues? Our concerns may carry more weight.

Becky Black, 23rd November 2007

Traffic Issues

There have been many postings about traffic issues and I feel I could offer a suggestion for slowing traffic in Tarleton.

Following an operation for a knee replacement I have used crutches to get about. What a difference it has made to me when crossing roads in the village. Normally I would say I would take my life in my hands dashing between cars and lorries whizzing about hoping to get safely from one side to the other. When I began walking with the help of crutches a different picture appeared and the traffic slowed down and even stopped for me.

Perhaps all the residents could borrow crutches for a day and drivers may realise that we have rights too.

It was not all good news though. Trying to walk past cars parked on the pavement is more difficult. as some drivers leave little or no room for pedestrians.

Why are the car parks in Tarleton not used?

Pavements are for pedestrians.

Joyce Rydings, 17th November 2007


Does anyone else find this a real problem?

I have to turn down Moss Lane in the morning and the bollards/fencing have all been knocked down making it really difficult to turn down Moss Lane into oncoming traffic.

Does anyone know how long these road works will be?

Lesley Standish-Gore, 9th November 2007

The State of the Moss Roads

Dear Sir,

We write to draw your attention to the state of the roads in the villages of North Meols (Banks), Hesketh with Becconsall and Tarleton – collectively known within West Lancashire as the Northern Parishes.

The Parish Councils of these three villages have forwarded a motion to the Lancashire Association of Parish and Town Councils (LAPTC) urging Lancashire County Council to review its maintenance schedules regarding the condition of the Moss Roads in these three respective parishes.

They are used by multi axle, maximum weight, articulated vehicles servicing the growers of the area and are in a desperate state of repair. These Moss roads are collapsing partly as a result of climate changes. We had a very dry summer in 2006 which caused the mosses to shrink and fissure. This was followed by an extremely wet summer this year causing flooding.

The HGV’s and very large tractors now using these roads has resulted in them being undermined causing them to break up. Because of Government involvement in telling Lancashire County Council where to spend its Council Tax revenue, very little has been spent on these roads.

However, it is not only the Moss roads that are suffering as many of the other roads in the three parishes are in a bad state of repair due to long term neglect. Apart from the A565 and the A59 all other roads are unclassified or “C” class roads. This is because they are not through roads. The roads, originally made for horse and carts with very little traffic on them, have largely been ignored for upgrading and maintenance over the years.

However a vibrant, and vital, agricultural industry exists in this area that now requires HGV’s and large tractors to access it. Had a road, known locally as the Green Lane Link been built, which was presented to the County Council for approval in 1999, then this situation would not have arisen.

We appeal to Lancashire County Council to press our Government to allow them to use more of Lancashire’s tax revenue to be spent on Lancashire’s roads on the Northern Parishes.

Also, perhaps the Government could be persuaded to loosen its purse strings and release some of the revenue it gains from road tax and fuel duty and actually use it in the manner for which it was intended.

Parish Cllr.P Sergeant– Vice Chairman, Hesketh with Becconsall Parish Council
Parish Cllr. D Vickers – Chairman, North Meols Parish Council
Parish Cllr. D. Rydings – Chairman, Tarleton Parish Council
County Cllr. M Barron – County Councillor for the Northern Parishes
Lorraine Fullbrook – Conservative Parliamentary Candidate

The Northern Parishes Road group, 19th October 2007


Dear Sir,

I have been looking back on previous postings on your website regarding concerns about traffic in our village.

I have also kept newspaper cuttings from 2003 and 2004 and looking back on those I am concerned that despite a lot of fine words being spoken at the time nothing seems to have been attempted to reduce traffic and traffic speeds in Tarleton.

I quote the “Village Visiter” from October 15th 2003;- Boy Hurt on Deadly Road – It shows a picture of Cllr Mee & the late Cllr Hodge who were campaigning for a pedestrian crossing on Church Road. It also states that Cllr Evans was supporting a campaign for a controlled crossing or a 20mph speed limit near Holy Trinity CE School.

A further quote from the “Southport Visiter” from July 9th 2004;- Gran pleading: ‘Slow down before you kill’ – A Mrs Vickers who lives on Blackgate Lane expressed the concern of a number of residents that the speed of vehicles, including lorries, is increasing and show no respects for those who live and walk on Blackgate Lane. The Community Beat Manager, PC Corrigan, had spent some time slowing traffic down and stated that some motorists didn’t even know the speed limit was 30mph.

Lancashire County Council in Oct 2006 stated –“A relief road would only reduce general traffic in Tarleton by 14-17% & HGV’s by 24-30% whilst causing a considerable increase in general traffic and HGV’s on Taylor’s Meanygate. It would not be practical to ban HGV’s from Tarleton Village and that they have no proposals for traffic or speed of traffic in Tarleton.

The Department of Transport in 2003 refused to increase the number of speed limit signs on Church Road & Blackgate Lane, a quote from their own advisory leaflet stated ‘For 30mph lit roads, no repeaters (speed limit signs) are permitted under the regulations 10(2)(a).

David Borrow in 2006 passed on concerns to LCC who in turn replied they were not prepared to do anything.


Does Lancs CC not appreciate that residents would love to see a 24-30% reduction in HGV’s using the village?

Does the Dept of Transport not consider that its rules might need changing?

Would our duly elected County Councillor please report on what actions have actually been taken by those who were said to be trying for.

A. A 20 miles per hour speed limit on Church Road. (Many other areas in West Lancs have similar limits)

B. A Pedestrian Crossing on Church Road.

C. Slower Traffic through our lovely village.

In the absence of replies to earlier question one can only assume that those in the know have their own agenda and are really not interested in making Tarleton a safer place for residents who elected them.

Yours faithfully,
J Johnston, 6th July 2007


Dear Sir,

I was delighted to observe a group of children on the Coe Lane estate in Tarleton using the' walking bus' system on Wednesday. I undertsand they start off with the child that lives the farthest away and stop at various prearranged locations until all children compete their journey at Holy Trinity Cof E school on Church Road. Obviously they are supervised by adults and all wear high visibility yellow jackets. This sets a good example to the children in encouraging exercise and reducing the volume of vehicles taking children to school in the morning. I hope parents in other areas of Tarleton will consider replicating this.

J. Rydings, 1st July 2007


I have been viewing the recent posts regarding the state of the roads around our area, and agree with a lot of what is being written. Most of the correspondents want action to come from our elected representatives, which whilst necessary, is nowhere near the end of the problem. To give people an insight into the total incompetence of the councils themselves, take note of the following.

Some of you may have noticed in the week before the 4th June, signage at a few locations in the Carr Lane area, informing of a three week closure for water main repairs. At 9.00am on the 4th June, as indicated, two workmen in a large Lancashire County Council lorry started placing additional signage to inform drivers the road was closed. This work took six hours to complete, whereupon they left for the day. As an aside at this point, I was quite amused when driving up Gorse Lane to the village, to note that the diversion signs were totally off the wall. The sign on the left hand footpath of Gorse Lane told me to divert to the left at the roundabout, whilst the one on the right hand footpath told me to turn right at the roundabout! Not very good if you don't know the area, like all the HGV drivers coming from the moss into the village.

Amusement aside, Tuesday the 5th June, the same two workmen in the same LCC vehicle arrived, and promptly took down all the signs and disappeared. At rough reckoning, two men, six hours per day each, probably earning about £15 per hour plus the running costs of the vehicle, this little exercise cost us about £400. For this sum of money, there was no work carried out at all, so either they have cancelled the job for no reason or maybe they've suddenly heard that Walking Day takes place on the 9th June, in which case the same two workmen will be back the following Monday to do exactly the same. The words booze up and brewery spring readily to mind, although I would have put it a little differently. So folks, don't hold your breath on getting anything done by our District or County Council's, neither of them know their bottom from their elbow, again my version is slightly different.

Chris Stringfellow, 6th June 2006

20 Miles per hour for Hesketh Bank and Tarleton.

After all the recent discussion on Roads, etc I still await an answer to my question regarding the above. Cllr Rydings seems to be the only Cllr now commenting on this Web Site. Do any of the others bother to read what is being discussed? Are they really interested now that they have been elected? If so may we have comments from those higher up please about the actions they propose to take to make the villages a safer place for all residents?

Hopefully the newly elected Cllrs may actually be instrumental in progressing the wishes of those who elected them.

J Johnston, 5th June 2007


Dear Sir,

I apologise to J Ball for assuming you were a male. Perhaps you could use your first name to prevent me making a mistake like this again. I have answered your question - I know you don't like my reply but to continue with this topic would be going round in circles. We'll just have to beg to differ in our methods of dealing with a problem. I respect your opinions so please respect mine.

Yours faithfully,
Parish Cllr. Dave Rydings, 4th June 2007

Sweeping Assumption

Dear Sir,

Mr Rydings automatically assumes my gender to be male. As he has previously made similar assumptions on the letters pages of this website it must be reasonable to conclude that Mr Rydings holds a deep seated view that only men are capable of forming and/or communicating an opinion.

I am sure that Tarleton resident and prospective parliamentary Conservative candidate, Mrs Fullbrook, would be only to pleased to discuss this matter with Mr Rydings. While she is at it, perhaps she could also fathom out the relevance of banging on about communism and dictators when (not) answering a question about when the moss roads might be fixed.

J. Ball, 4th June 2007

Not Apportioning Blame

Dear Sir,

I for one am not apportioning blame Mr J Ball just stating the facts as they are. Do you really think your elected representatives spend their waking moments passing the blame on to each other?

There is only so much money to go around and the facts are that a trifling amount has been allocated to the road repair programme for the whole of Lancashire by the elected County Council. I for one am very unhappy about it but am trying to do something about it.

I would agree with you Mr R Hodson that locally elected representatives should support the people who elected them regardless of political persuasion who live within the area they were elected for. I certainly will do just that.

As I stated in my previous letter - Can you think of a better system? Communism? Dictatorship?

Democracy, with all its many, many faults has been around a long, long time.

Insurance covers you for mishaps, etc., so if you think you've voted for the wrong party your insurance is that you can vote them out in 4 to 5 years time. On the other hand if you don't vote you have no grounds for complaint have you? in other words no insurance!

Mr R Hodson & Mr J Ball; like you I care very much about the area I live in and whilst I would love to see the roads improved, the pavements repaired, the water pressure increased, more police presence, slower traffic, no HGV's in the village ..... I could go on. ... I have to work within the democratic system, like it or not, which is all I can do.

Yours faithfully,
Parish Cllr. Dave Rydings. 3rd June 2007

Apportioning Blame


Whilst the politicians apportion blame, the Moss roads of Tarleton and Hesketh Bank crumble and the best suggestion so far is that we should all lobby Lancashire County Council!

As there is no debate to be had about the shocking state of these roads then just what are we actually being asked to lobby for - the council to do their job? Will these roads only become a priority when they actually become impassable? If that is the case then at the present rate of deterioration I would estimate that to be within 12 months anyway (and thus should be budgeted for in any case).

It is infuriating to see our elected representatives trying to make political capital whilst watching the roads of our village break apart . No doubt Mr Rydings is correct about Lancashire County Council being tasked with maintaining our roads but perhaps he might take the time to consider that if his beloved West Lancashire District Councillors had not repeatedly passed totally inappropriate developments without there being suitable infrastructure in place then this would not be an issue.

Whether it be industrial scale food distribution centres or housing estates, West Lancs have continued to nod them off and then shrug their shoulders when the roads, sewers, water pressure etc fail to cope with the additional demand. As you say Mr Ridings, in a democracy there are rights and responsibilities and Instead of lecturing us, perhaps you could run a seminar at WLDC.

Speaking of rights and responsibilities, perhaps our elected County Councillor would care to answer the very simple question posed by Mr Holcroft - when will our roads be repaired?

J. Ball, 3rd June 2007

Defining Democracy

Typical politicians answer, Mr. Rydings, you will go far!

I thought that a democracy meant that elected representatives at any level were supposed to support the people who elected them whatever their views. Ask the majority of people who live in Hesketh Bank if we want better roads, police station, library, health centre, public toilets, car park and then you'll see what a democracy is. A bit like insurance really; compulsory to pay in but difficult to get anything back in return.

Richard Hodson 3rd June 2007

Living in a democracy

Dear Sir,

Mr R Hodson states "why does everything have to get political?" Unfortunately that is the nature of living in a Democracy.

Does he believe we really over blessed with plenty of people in authority who actually do nothing? I would venture to suggest Mr R Hodson you consider this. There is more to the state of our roads than just sweeping them.

I agree Bob does a splendid job but he is not responsible for the road or pavement surface or deciding if a new road should be built.

Bob has stood for the Parish Council on 2 occasions but has failed to gain enough votes to get elected. Like it or not Mr R Hodson that is "Democracy". It involves rights and responsibilities. You have the right to criticise those in authority and even vote against them at every election but your responsibility, whilst living in this democracy, is to accept the will of the majority of voters. Can you suggest a better system to live in?

The next [Tarleton] Parish Council meeting is on Monday 11th June at 7.30pm in the Pavilion on Carr Lane where you have the right to air your opinions on matters that concern the Parish Council. You will be very welcome.

Yours faithfully,
Parish Cllr. Dave Rydings, 2nd June 2007

Getting Political

Why does everything have to get political? I am a native of Hesketh Bank and like every other village and town throughout the country we have seen a reduction in services, policing etc continuously through successive governments whether Labour or Conservative and we have had to pay continuously more for it. We seem to be over-blessed with plenty of people in authority from Local through to National telling everyone else what to do without actually doing anything themselves.

Talk about the state of the roads, can you imagine how they would be if we weren't fortunate enough to have a certain Mr. Bob Foster out in all weathers trying to keep the place something like tidy. Come next local Parish elections Bob gets my vote; one of the few people I know with the village interests at heart.

Richard Hodson, 1st June 2007

Deplorable State of Roads

Dear Sir,

J Johnston & S Holcroft have written recently about the state of the roads and footpaths in and around Tarleton. I fully appreciate their concerns but would respectfully suggest that they lobby Lancashire County Council who are responsible for the roads in Tarleton.

I have copied below a report from the Conservative Group on LCC deploring the state of the highways in our County. Please remember that LCC is Labour controlled:-

On February 22 at the full Council meeting, Cty. Cllr Keith Young, spokesman on transport and highways for the Conservative Group tabled a critical motion calling attention to the Labour Council’s failure to maintain the County highways and pavements to an acceptable standard. The notice of motion called on the Labour Cabinet to, “demonstrate its commitment to the urgent implementation of policies to remedy these deficiencies so that residents will feel that something tangible is being done.”

Labour Councillors refused to support the motion indicating that they at least were perfectly satisfied with things as they were.

Numbers of Conservative Councillors intervened in the debate citing examples of poor performance brought to them by their constituents. These included temporary patching rather than proper repairs, poor response times, defects not attended causing hazards to pedestrians, in some cases giving rise to claims for personal injury. One member said that the backlog of maintenance was so great that Lancashire’s roads are among the worst in the country. If lack of resources is the problem, that is down to the Labour government, which refuses to provide sufficient money for councils to spend on these basic services.

Other members complained of traffic congestion, the withdrawal of heavily subsidised school bus services without any attempt to look for more economical means of delivery. This at a time when the Local Transport Plan calls for increased bus usage.

The Conservatives have already put forward proposals for a £3 million program for refurbishing pavements throughout the County. This could have been financed by modest reductions in the 154 million miles travelled by Council staff every year but Labour turned it down.

What is needed is a more creative “Can Do” approach designed to address these problems rather than complacent self-congratulation over Lancashire’s four-star “excellent” Council status. As Cllr Young pointed out during the debate:

“The Government may choose to think that this is an excellent Council but if you ask those people who use Lancashire’s roads and pavements every day what they thought, you would get a very different kind of answer.” (Ends)

I'm sure that both the correspondents will appreciate that there is no immediate solution to the problem as long as Labour hold the purse strings at County Hall. What I would ask is that they support Conservative moves to get more funding for roads and pavements in Lancashire.

The Green Lane Link is high on the local Conservatives agenda as the only real solution to ensuring HGV's do not need to access the village when travelling to the Moss.

Yours faithfully,
Parish Cllr. Dave Rydings, 30th May 2007

Road Problems

I would agree with Simon Holcroft about the state of certain roads in and around Tarleton.Not only are the roads a great concern but also the state of the pavements owing to the massive lorries which now patrol our village.

I think as far back as 1997 a route was sought by the villagers to take the lorries out of the village and avoid the dreadful problems we now encounter. Can anyone tell me what progress has been made in this matter over the 10 years, if any and where we go from here?

Most routes where schools are located now have 20 miles per hour signs highly visible, Burscough being one close at hand. Do we have any here? If not why not? Are we not concerned with our children's safety?

Tarleton Parish Council had plans to resurface the Car Park opposite the school in Church Road. Do any of the Councillors try to persuade drivers in Tarleton to actually park in the Car Parks and not on the streets (or pavements) causing obstructions?

Will we see any positive action from our Councillors be they Parish, District or Council to benefit the tired residents?

J Johnston, 28th May 2007

Hundred End Lane


Can anyone in the know even speculate as to how long it will be before something is done about this appalling stretch of road? So far as I can see, the Local Authority's only response to complaints has been not to improve the road surface but merely to erect signs warning that the road is uneven. Talk about stating the obvious.

I shudder to think how many milesworth of life expectancy our vehicles' suspensions lose through traversing this third world surface which, in terms of smoothness, makes Southport Coast Road feel like a German Autobahn. I know it's not the only shocker around (Gorse/Legh Lane, Blackgate Lane at the Huntapac end spring to mind) but it's got to be up there (down there?) among the worst.

Mr Simon Holcroft, 26th May 2007

Bank Bridge

Another serious accident on the A59 just east of Bank Bridge on Monday night. I know we all hate traffic restrictions but isn't it time there was a limit on the stretch to the Toll bar roundabout.

Wasn't there a plan in the past to by-pass what has always been a danger spot? Soon someone will be killed probably turning into the creche. I use the road every day and see lunacy frequently. Any thoughts?

Mick Bodill, 22nd November 2006

Road saftey issues please!

We can start a new thread on local politics if anyone wants to start the ball rolling with a new topic.

Editor, 21st September 2006

Dear Sir,

Here we go again - I am beginning to wonder if JH reads letters properly. Instead of being impatient in rushing off a reply he should read my letter again. I have described the difference between Branch and Association and my relative involvement with both. Does JH have a reading impairment?

Dave Rydings. 21st Septmeber 2006

Dear Editor,

I don't know who is spinning who here, but any reader can verify for themselves the veracity of my point about Mr. Rydings Political Agenda by visiting the website he very helpfully has listed in his latest ditty.

Now then, according to Mr. Rydings, Vice Chairman (Political) as listed under 'Branch Committee' does not exist and furthermore if it does, it does not mean it is 'Political'! So can anyone trust the impartiality of a self-appointed sentinel of all matters in the area?

Cllr. J.E. Hodson, 21st September 2006

Dear Sir,

I am concerned that this topic has become political in its content. This was never my intention but it is obvious it was JH's.

As I have stated previously I am not the Political officer of the "Association". I am the Membership secretary. The "Association" covers the whole of the constituency of South Ribble. Within that constituency there are a number of "Branches". Hesketh Bank, Banks and Tarleton are a "Branch" within the South Ribble Association. I am Vice Chair (political) of that Branch. P Hipwell used the word "Association" and I was ensuring I answered his query accurately. The Website that JH eludes to clearly explains that. (

The website has been set up by the Branch as a way of advising the residents in this area that far from being defunct (JH's words) we are a very active Branch of the very active South Ribble Conservative Association. I will not make anymore comments on this theme - this subject heading is "Road Safety" and not Local Politics. I would though appreciate if my letter could be published if only to set the record straight.

Yours faithfully,
Dave Rydings, 20th September 2006

Political Officer

Dear Editor,

That's funny, I could have sworn that on the (now defunct) Tarleton & Banks Conservative Association Website - the legend POLITICAL, in brackets, could clearly be seen following Mr. Rydings name and position!! Maybe it means something different these days!

Cllr. J.E. Hodson. 20th September, 2006

Goings On

Dear Sir,

Reply to P Hipwell - I am not aware of the "goings on" in (Beirut) Mark Square but I would refer anyone to the Police's own website on recorded crime in the area. Why should I comment on them? I was questioning Chris's evidence and reasoning not his views. I did not consider I was "having a good old moan", rather I thought I was answering JH's allegations.

A membership secretary deals with paperwork to do with membership - there is no such post in the South Ribble Conservative Association as a political officer. I was setting the matter straight. I hope I've answered your questions.

Yours faithfully,
Dave Rydings, 19th September 2006

Beirut Square

Dear Sir,

In reply to Mr Rydings letter dated 16th September I for one would like to know what he thinks of Chris Stringfellow's remarks regarding the recent Beirut Square goings on.

Having asked about evidence he now seems to be unable to comment on the matter. As Mr Rydings often seems to be apt to do, he seems only to be able to see the things he can have a good old moan about and unable to take things further when someone directly answers one of his questions.

Could Mr Rydings also inform those of us less educated in political matters what exactly the difference between a "Political Officer" and a "Membership Secretary" actually is, since it is obviously important?

Don't get me wrong here Dave, I most certainly appreciate your contributions to an otherwise fairly apathetic political arena within the villages. They often put a smile on my face.

P. Hipwell, 18th September 2006

P.S. Does anyone really understand these new laws regarding children< 4' 5" etc. Thats the easy bit, the bits I dont get are those about exceptional cases and front seats etc ....yadda yadda..

Road Safety

Dear Sir,

The heading of this theme is supposed to be 'Road Safety'. The main reason that the majority of people objected to the siting of the police resource centre on the Over 60's car park was one of road safety. Let us please not forget that fact.

The so called 'corporate decision' (Mr Hodson likes his fancy phrases doesn't he?) by the whole Parish Council is not and was not, correct. He and he alone, as Chairman, initially negotiated with the police and gave the Parish Council his interpretation of the discussions he had with the police. The police would not even allow a plan of the centre to be made available to the public and alternative location costings were based on opinion not fact. Other locations were offered in the village but not persued by either JH or the police. I wonder why?

Where did I 'attack' or 'insult' Chis Stringfellow's intelligence? Unlike JH I regularily discuss village issues with Chris and I respect his opinions. We can have an intelligent discussion with each other and agree to differ without falling out. This would never be possible with JH.

How could JH call the public meeting 'trumped up'? The Tarleton Suite was full to capacity at that meeting and the police were invited to discuss their ideas with the residents but declined. Even JH himself did not attend. I suppose he doesn't like people challenging his ideas. The police declined on the grounds of not getting involved in local politics. A fact worth adding here is that the Police Chief Superindent at the time was moved to a desk job at Hutton shortly afterwards

The fact that a Conservative Councillor was elected should go some way to convince JH that maybe that is what the residents of Tarleton wanted. It's called democracy.Why wasn't JH re-elected as a District Councillor after just one term in office? It could only be that voters didn't want him to represent them. I have become increasingly convinced that he believes his own 'spin'.

To set the record straight I am not the Political Officer to the local Conservative Association I am the Membership Secretary. Oh dear, yet another JH mistake.

Yours faithfully,
Dave Rydings, 16th September 2006

Proof Available

In reply to Mr Rydings letter, and the points he raises, no I did not attend any of events he mentions, by the time of these the outcome was already a foregone conclusion. As for delving deeper into the accusations, by the time he dug deeper, the police had already pulled out. In reply to the other points, yes I have proof of these crimes, yes I do report them to the police, and as he is well aware, a member of my family is on the PACT.

If he wants proof of the crimes, let me see, a burnt out house on Hesketh Lane, the target of an arson attack - the shell is still there, a recent attack on a person in Mark Square with a golf club, plus the assailants smashed a car with the same weapon - this was witnessed by numerous people including myself, the same evening, attempted petrol bomb attacks in a nearby street, members of my family tell me they will not go near Mark Sqare after dusk, its too frightening, ask the local shopkeepers who open at night how much trade they have lost in recent months - how much evidence would Mr Rydings like?

Tarleton is starting to feel more like Beirut than a Lancashire village. In terms of paying more for my policing, why should I? I already pay council taxes for policing, and I am not receiving a service for that, I'm getting Mickey Mouse and Pluto on pushbikes, I'm not asking for different treatment than any other resident of the area, we all pay for the police - when are we going to see a return on our payments. Finally, I have attended a number of these PUBLIC MEETINGS with the police in the past, and I know full well, the only people they will listen to are their political masters, from local and central government, hence my call for our local politicians to join forces and get something done, not leave it to Joe Public - they were all elected to represent US, lets see them put their money where their mouths are and do some representing.

Chris Stringfellow, 16th September 2006

Investment Lost

Dear Editor,

In response to the assertions by Dave Rydings ( Political Officer to the Local Conservative Association) that I, as an individual, made misleading statements over the Police Resource Centre, I would wish to point out that the consultation was agreed by the Parish Council as a Corporate decision and not by myself alone although the general observation that it was the Over 60's Car Park or nowhere was an accurate ( as history now shows) assessment of the likely outcome. This was not merely said because it was being presented as a fait accompli but as an accurate reflection of what the Police themselves had been saying all along.

Mr Rydings is perhaps being carried away in his eagerness to yet again 'prove' the wrongness of 'Cllr. Hodson' and his crew!

The fact is, as events proved, the Local Conservatives were hell bent on stopping the Police Resource Centre from going ahead whatever the cost to the village, with their only alternative site being in private ownership which virtually guarenteed that the Police would have insufficient funds for the project to go ahead. In the end Mr. Rydings and his cohorts got their wish by making the proposal so controversial that the Police pulled back from the deal. For him to accuse Mr. Stringfellow of not joining the debate by not attending the 'Meeting' held at the Cock & Bottle is more than misleading in itself. This is an insult to the intelligence of Mr. Stringfellow and the wider community. Not only did the vast majority of the village boycott this trumped up political event but also, revealingly, so did the Police themselves.

So, just exactly what did Mr. Rydings and the Conservatives achieve ? Well they can be very proud of the fact that they got yet another Tory Councillor elected and into the bargain managed to lose Tarleton £220,000 of investment into a facility which would have been a tremendous asset to the village. Well done!!

Cllr. J.E.Hodson, 15th September 2006


Dear Sir,

I would like to answer Chris Stringfellow's accusation about the alleged sabotaging of the Police Resource Centre. I, like everyone I have spoken to in the village, would have liked to have seen the siting of a new Police Resource Centre in a more central location than it currently is. The fact is that information was put out at the time by the then Chair of the Parish Council, John Hodson, who claimed that it was on the site of the Over 60's car park or not at all. It has since transpired that that information was misleading together with alleged costs of other sites within the village. If you had followed the discussions (including a public meeting held in the Cock and Bottle at the time) and delved into it deeper (as I did at the time), then you would not now be making such a misguided accusation about a vociferous few.

Might I ask you Chris - have you contacted the police about all this alleged crime in the village of Tarleton? Have you evidence to back up your statements? Do you attend PACT meetings to give your evidence to the police?

Finally, are you prepared to pay more for policing on your council tax? Why not attend the PUBLIC MEETING at 7pm on Tuesday 25th September at the High School and offer your views and evidence the members of the Police Authority.

Yours faithfully,
Dave Rydings, 15th September 2006


Further to Jackie Parry's letter dated 14th September, my feeling is that if we had a real police presence in Tarleton, instead of the Mickey Mouse CSO's, they could deal with illegal cycling activities by prosecuting some of the offenders. As things stand, the CSO's are barely out of school themselves, and spend more time hanging around Mark Square precinct or the streets with their former mates.

Since the out and out sabotaging of the proposed Police Station in the village centre by a vociferous few, it has become quite noticeable that the police are giving this area a wide berth and choosing to patrol other parts of the district. We now have a situation in Tarleton, and presumably Hesketh Bank where violent crimes are going unchecked, burglary numbers are rising and large numbers of residents are refusing to use the village shopping areas after 5.00pm due to the intimidation they perceive from the large numbers of younger people congregating there.

In all aspects of community life, Tarleton is becoming the OK Corral of West Lancashire, and until we receive a decent police service for our council taxes, it will continue to worsen.

My personal opinion is that it is now time for our Parish Councillors, be they Conservative or Independent, Tarleton and Hesketh Bank, to unite and demand a better service from Lancashire Constabulary, with a regular (REAL, not mickey mouse) police presence and patrols in Tarleton and Hesketh Bank.

Does anyone else have any views on this matter?

Chris Stringfellow, 14th September 2006


Cyclists, young and old enough to know better, just don't seem to be bothered with having LIGHTS on their bikes.

If someone got injured (or worse) it would undoubtably be the driver's fault, yet we (drivers) should be congratulated on awareness and good vision on many an occasion, or am I the only one to have come across "night cyclists". Up and down pavements without so much as a backward glance to see if there is a car there and if it is safe for them to join the road. Not only that but groups of cyclists, often 2 or 3 abreast like they own the road and drivers must take avoiding action.

Children/youths of Tarleton High, in my opinion need talking to on the safety aspect of:

1 - NOT cycling in a group as they chatter on the way home
2 - NOT giving rude hand signals when drivers pass
3 - NOT going on/off the pavement without so much as a look to see what is behind them.
4 - NOT riding without lights

Community Service Officers/Police Officers should go in to the school on a regular basis to serve a message of safety and awareness of other road users to all pupils. If they are doing that already, then it is not working.....

Jackie Parry, 14th September 2006

HGV Concerns

Dear Sir,

I would be interested to hear from any resident in Tarleton if they are concerned about the size and number of HGV's that are using Coe Lane, Church Road, Blackgate Lane and Gorse Lane.

The number and times that these vehicles use these roads as well as any observations they may have as to the environmental effect they have on their lives.

I am trying to build a survey based on residents observations and opinions as I feel that this would provide a broader picture than a one off survey which is usually based on traffic counts at a given time and does not seem to involve any discussions with residents.

I will submit my results on this website as soon as I consider I have enough facts to present, so any observations and opinions residents have would be welcome and treated in strict confidence. Please send them to wheelsman (at)

Yours faithfully,
Dave Rydings, 6th September 2006


While negotiating the normal traffic chaos outside the Hesketh Bank coop, with a queue of cars waiting as I tried to turn back on myself by reversing into the space by the side of the HSBC bank, my car stopped dead with a loud disheartening scrunch.

Wondering who or what I had hit I looked again in my mirrors to see...........nothing, no car, no bollard no pensioner,.... nout. It was only by upon getting out I noticed the tree stump on the corner impaled in my bumper.

Unlike the bollards a meter further back, this stump has been cut low enough to be completely invisible from any rear view mirror yet left high enough to do some automotive GBH.

Could someone somewhere see that it is removed completely or better still replanted with a sapling. Yours, one hundred pounds poorer......

Nick Kemp, 9th April 2006

Parking Problems

Dear Editor

I agree that there is a parking problem.

My main gripe is re parking in Tarleton. There are ample car parking facilities but still people park on the roads causing congestion of traffic and also problems for pedestrians.

Yesterday I was driving out of Tarleton past the NatWest Bank. As usual, someone was parked on the double yellow lines. The oncoming car did not stop as he should have but carried out, hitting my car (whoever you were, thank you so much). This road is not only used by cars but also large lorries, tractors and buses.

The other problem area is the TCP school and also on the bend ahead of the petrol station. This is an accident waiting to happen in the times when the school is letting out or in the mornings. Some time soon a pedestrian is going to be hit. It will be too late then.

Lesley Standish-Gore, 19th January 2006

Kearsley Chaos

In response to Dave Rydings letter about parking I phoned the police complaining I couldn't walk along Kearsley Ave without having to walk on the road as cars were parked on the pavement up to garden fences and walls.

I was told it was no longer a police matter it was a council matter. When I told her there was 16 cars parked and 14 on the pavement I was told to walk around them. I asked what action would be taken if I accidently scratched a car whilst squeezing past on the pavement. I was told I'd be liable for criminal damage. But lets face it the police are a waste of space as they either can't be bothered or can't do it or can't put the cup of tea down. Oh and Mr Ryding you will never see me at a council meeting as I work nights and have done for 13 years.

Brian Curran, 18th January 2006

Mark Square Development

I've just read the brochure about the proposed redevelopment of Mark Square.

I cannot make up my mind if it will be good for the village or not (but that is not the point of this letter). I am glad that we managed to retain the parking spaces on the Over 60's car park as looking at the plans for Mark Sq it appears that a considerable number of car parking spaces will be lost. These were around the back of the Square and were not used much anyway.

Parking outside the Off Licence and The Estate Agents on Church Road should be eliminated with the new mini-roundabout so at least it will remove that problem. I agree with the previous correspondent that double yellow lines are not the answer. People ignore them anyway and parked cars slow down the traffic. I just wish more of the arrogant drivers who park on pavements would be given a parking ticket.

Dave Rydings, 31st October 2005

Parking On The Pavement

With regard the recent comments about motorists' parking on the pavement; I feel that the problem is not simply the parking two wheels up on the kerb, but their parking on the road at all. There is no "selfishness" in a motorist parking on the kerb; they are simply showing consideration for other motorists at the expense of pedestrians

There's no need to labour the point about the roads in Tarleton being over capacity because this is perfectly evident, and parked cars only exacerbate the problem. On Hesketh Lane and Church Road this presents a traffic problem, and on side roads such as Hillcrest Drive and Sutton Avenue, a safety issue. Many of the traditional houses along Hesketh Lane have long, narrow driveways, and I expect that the problem is laziness. These houses have off-road parking for two or three cars, but residents won't make the effort to shuffle them around and instead leave one on the road. I lose count of the times I've queued with two dozen other cars to pass a car parked outside a house with an empty driveway. In Hillcrest Drive this has reached the point where I regularly stop just off the junction at the top to let a car all the way up from the top of Holly Grove / Hillcrest Close, because there is nowhere to pass in between. Being as Hesketh Lane clearly can't be widened, and Johnsons Meanygate can't be extended to the by-pass, we're stuck with large goods vehicles, and heavy commuter traffic, through the village. It would be a sad state of affairs if Holy Trinity church and the Becconsall Inn needed to be joined by unsightly double yellow lines, but I don't feel the road has any capacity for on-road (or on-pavement) parking.

One small respite from this situation would at least come with the proposed expansion of the Mark's Square facility, which might just tempt the worst parkers in the village, those outside Threshers etc, onto the attractive new car park.

P Corbett, 28 October 2005


Dear Sir,

I wonder how many of our local councillors noticed the piece in this weeks (04 August) Ormskirk Advertiser about Bertie the dog. Over the years, I have repeatedly questioned the Parish Council regarding the speed, volume of traffic and possiblity of traffic calming on Carr Lane, and for those with long enough memories, you will recall my son ended up in an intensive care unit in Liverpool following an accident on Carr Lane. Along Carr Lane is a childrens play area, a rugby ground where children play and a football / cricket ground where children play. Are the council going to wait for an escalation from a dog to a child before considering action.

To date they have made noises about traffic calming being part of the stipulations for the rugby club - red paint on the road, part of the agreement for the Pavilion extension - nothing at all and we'll carry out a consultation via the Village Voice - again nothing at all. One of your other letters highlights the commendable speed of Councillor Kay in dealing with a local issue, lets hope the rest of the council can learn from him, put their backsides in gear and actually listen to the people they are purporting to represent.

Finally, having lost animals to some of the speed freaks who use Carr Lane, may I offer my sympathy to Mr. Gordon for the loss of his dog.

Chris Stringfellow, 5th August 2006

Pavement Parking

The question was asked at last Tuesday's Tarleton Parish Council Meeting -"why is Tarleton afflicted with motorists parking on the pavements?"

We were advised that at the PACT meetings this topic is raised every month. We were also advised by our local JP Councillor that in his opinion the Crown Prosecution Service would not take any action against a motorist who parked on the pavement even if our local Community Beat Manager gave the driver a ticket for illegally parking.

We have reached a very sad state of affairs when a mother pushing a pram has to go into the road to get round a vehicle that has been parked with 2 wheels on the pavement by a selfish driver.

I for one intend to take this further and I hope others will do so as well.

Dave Rydings, 22nd July 2005

Pavement Problems

My mother has to walk along Gorse Lane in fear because of the footpath being so small and lumpy with large LGV's going up and down to the farms.You need to see two LGV's passing each other to see one big heavy problem, the road is too small yet cars park all over the place making it harder still for the LGV's to pass and for people who try to walk along that part of the road, One side has no pavement in parts and the other has big lumps and uneven pavement, How are the older people coping with walking sticks / wheelchairs etc, and now more houses built there and the road is worse still now as they have dug it up.....Why can't the pavements be sorted to make it safer for everybody ??

Paul Morgan, 29th March 2005


Dear Sir,

I cannot help but support the main point of Carol's letter - People Drive Too Fast.

I wrote to the Chief Traffic and Development Engineer (South), Sue White, at County Hall several times last year about the speed of traffic and poor signage in the village. I wrote to the Parish Council on the same subject last year and they advised me they would take it up with LCC. I have recently written to County Councillor Jean Yates who is the cabinet member for highways and transportation and received a reply last week that she will get one of her officers to look at the situation. Carol - why is it that ordinary folk like you and me can see a problem and those in authority appear to be completely oblivious about it? All it takes is a qualification in plain old common sense to know that unless measures are taken very soon we are heading toward a major incident on Church Road, Coe Lane or Hesketh Lane.

Dave Rydings, 25th March 2005

Bicycle Lights

Regarding Steve Hoghton's comments about cyclists riding without lights - as usual this is a comment aimed at children and their parents. I have 4 children my eldest son uses lights on his bike - IT IS ADULTS he should be pointing the finger at as well. For example a few weeks ago I met 2 elderly people with one badly lit light between them, they were nearly knocked off their bikes down Guide Road, further up Station Road I passed a man riding a bike with NO lights and carrying a small dog (jack russell) in one arm!!!! Whilst I appreciate Steve may be concerned for children being knocked off their bikes in the dark, is your driving perfect - have you ever driven without full care and attention, have you ever speeded.......

Regarding Paul Cartwright's comments, I also lived down The Chimes, and I agree with his comments. Even though I drive a LWB Shogun it is impossible to vehicles approaching the mini roundabout from Tarleton - if the vehicle is a sports car (which there are a lot about now) you have no chance of seeing them. It think the problem is the fact that the roundabout is useless if you can't see vehicles approaching it. Also drivers approaching it are not aware of this problem, and most just drive over it - put some speed humps up and some bigger signals.

Traffic calming measures here would benefit the very busy area in the village aroung the school, and also the same would have to be done on Coe Lane.

The trouble is PEOPLE DRIVE TOO FAST. And for every new house that has been built we have gained how many more cars on our already congested and dangerous roads!

Carol Baxter-Nobbs, 24th March 2005

Road Safety

Dear Sir,

This is also my final utterance on on the subject of the Parish Council's ineffectiveness on road safety. I am aware of the responsibilities and limitations of the Parish Council but their village plan indicated that they would take up the cudgel of road safety on behalf of residents because that is one subject the residents indicated concerned them.

This then carries a responsibility if the Parish Council produce an action plan and indicate in that action plan that they will, within 3 months, request LCC to carry out a review of traffic within the Tarleton area. Bear in mind this was September 2003.

The Parish Council make public the minutes of their meetings and have distributed 2 newsletters. I cannot find any record of discussions with LCC on the subject of road safety in any of those publications. I ask again - have they had any discussions with LCC and if so what has been achieved? Are we likely to see any improvement in road safety within the village?

That is why I stated my belief that they are good at producing pieces of paper. That is why I questioned the effectiveness of the Parish Council. So, I have come full circle - what was the point of the village plan and why produce an action plan? I rest my case.

Your faithfully
Dave Rydings, 7th January 2005

Council Responsibilities

Dear Editor,

I apologise for writing to you again, it is not my intention to use the letters page as my own private soapbox. However, I thought the subject was "Road Safety", not "let's find something (anything) to have another go at the Parish Council about".

If Dave Rydings were serious about road safety he would follow the guidance I have quoted from the West Lancs District Council website. On the other hand, if he were just trying to make some politically-inspired points, he would continue to blame the Parish Council for everything from the state of the weather to the state of the roads. I suppose we have to watch out for future letters (on any subject) being hijacked to enable blame to be piled high at the door of the Parish Council - at least until the next round of local elections are out of the way!

Dave seems to be slightly confused as to the differing responsibilities of the Parish, District and County Councils, although a brief look at the Tarleton Parish Council website would have clarified his misunderstanding. The Parish Council website shows that in practice their responsibilities are really quite low-level stuff, but naturally of importance to those of us who live here:

  • maintenance of the children's play areas at Carr Lane and Mere Brow
  • administering of local charities
  • public footpaths
  • street lighting and signs
  • pavements
  • bus shelters
  • maintenance of the football and cricket grounds
  • maintenance of the Scout Wood

The extract I have already quoted from West Lancs District Council shows that responsibility for potholes, road signs, traffic calming, etc clearly lies with the County Council. We might wish that was not the case, we might believe that if the Parish Council were given the powers they would be able to implement what we residents actually want, but wishful thinking about getting the Parish Council to make a take-over bid for highway maintenance is as realistic as blaming the District Council at Ormskirk for the war in Iraq. In neither case has the council been given the power to do anything about the situtation. Although both councils are free to express an opinion and offer advice on any matter under the sun (as are we all), the ultimate responsibility lies further up the chain.

If, like Dave, anybody else feels that our District and County councillors have not been doing the job they have been elected to do (in this case on road safety), I urge you to take the matter up with them directly. Blaming the Parish Council for the failings of the District and County Councils is neither fair nor rational. Blaming the District Council for the failings of the Council Council is equally wrong. The Parish Council can and do lobby on traffic issues with considerable vigour, as does the District Council, but the responsible body is the County Council, as explained on the WLDC website. By all means ask the Parish Council to emphasise to WLDC and LCC how important the matter is to us, but I'm sure a far better response would be achieved if we were to bring our concerns directly to those bodies with the power to do something about it. So I stick with my original advice - fol low the guidance on the WLDC website and report problems and concerns to Ormskirk, who will pass them on to the County Council.

And that, I promise, is my last word on the subject, other than to say a short article on the various responsibilities of the Parish, District and County Councils would be interesting for both villages (Hesketh Bank and Tarleton) if anybody could be persuaded to write one. We would then know where our various complaints could be most effectively directed. Apart from perhaps achieving a successful resolution of the particular problem, this would provide an additional, valuable benefit by avoiding a potential avalanche of letters on various subjects, all attempting to shovel blame onto the Parish Council (whose members are unpaid) in a transparent attempt to protect those really responsible (who receive payment just for turning up at meetings). Which makes me think ...... that would be another interesting article ..... the payments made by the three levels of council to our local representatives.

Glenys Simpson, 6th January 2005

Parish Council Progress

Dear Sir,

I appreciate the support from Glenys but I would suggest she misses the point.

The Parish Council was the instigator of the Village Plan and appears to have done nothing to deal with the concerns of residents about traffic within the village. If they have, then I for one, would like some details. They have been very good at publishing pieces of paper.

Does the Parish Council have the powers to change matters regarding traffic?

Does the Parish Council have any powers?

Traffic issues are of great concern to the residents of Tarleton and, in my opinion, should be treated with a greater urgency by our locally elected representatives. The Green Lane link has been talked about for a considerably long time.

If my comments give the impression that I consider that nothing has been done about it whose fault is that? We, the residents, are the ones who delegate to the Parish Council to act on our behalf. It does not give them the right to ignore our concerns. It is up to them to take up the issues with WLDC & LCC on our behalf and report back any progress or otherwise.

So Glenys, to suggest that we, the residents, should lobby the WLDC & LCC defeats the object of the Parish Council.

Yours faithfully
Dave Rydings, 5th January 2005

Lack of progress

Dear Editor,

I agree with David Rydings' complaint about a perceived lack of progress on road safety in Tarleton. The wishes of the people of Tarleton (as expressed, for example, in the "Village View") have for too long been ignored by those with the power to do something about it. There have been many years of discussions, and meetings, and public displays of sympathy - but, as Dave says, little has happened.

But there is one point on which I disagree with him - his suggestion that we wait for the elections to ask prospective candidates what they intend to do about traffic conditions in the village. Asking prospective candidates what they intend to do will result only in more words and extravagant promises. I suggest that we don't wait until then - we ask now, but we ask our current representatives to account for their lack of progress.

The following extract from WLDC's website shows where responsibility for this state of affairs lies:

"Lancashire County Council is the Highway Authority responsible for all adopted highways in West Lancashire. This generally includes:

  • ordinary road maintenance
  • street lighting
  • highway drainage
  • traffic and direction signing
  • traffic signals and road markings
  • highway improvements and traffic calming
  • traffic regulation orders
  • traffic surveys
  • winter gritting

You can report any problems associated with the road network i.e. potholes, flooding, etc to West Lancashire District Council and we will pass them on to Lancashire County Council for their attention. To speak to the Lancashire Highways Partnership direct call 0845 053 0011. To report problems to the District Council call 01695 577177."

Sadly only two of our three West Lancs District Council seats are currently filled, and equally regrettably we do not for the moment have a County Council representative. As the above extract shows, we can all speak directly to the District Council and ask them to pass on our concerns to the County Council. The councillors have so far proved themselves somewhat ineffective, so perhaps it would be a good time to take matters into our own hands and make our feelings clear to those with the power to do something about it. And doing it sooner, rather than later too!

Glenys Simpson, 4th January 2005

Road Safety

Dear Sir,

I am prompted to comment on the recent letters about road safety within the village of Tarleton. The inadequacy of the road network within the village is the crux of the matter and this was highlighted in the results from the consultation with villagers carried out prior to the "Village Plan" being published in 2003.

A considerable amount of money was laid out to pay for a report by a respected company, Atkins, to carry out a traffic survey in Tarleton. The survey's recommendations were published in 2003 and the first edition of the Parish Councils "Village View" in March 2004 asked for support for pedestrian crossings outside our schools.

It is now 2005 - what has been achieved? The road signs within the village are poor yet according to Lancs CC they "are adequate and meet the regulations". The feasibility study for a "Green Lane Link" was carried out in 1999 with a view to reducing the volume of HGV's coming through the village.

Those in authority seems to be aware of the problems but seem unable to do anything about it. I would therefore suggest that when the local elections come up this year you ask the prospective candidates what they intend to do about traffic issues within the village - especially those who have been councillors since 2002.

Yours faithfully,
David Rydings, 4th January 2005

Speed Bumps Needed

I read with interest the letter from Katie Cotterell regarding the mini roundabout problems on Coe Lane. We live in The Chimes, and when leaving join Church Rd at the mini roundabout junction with Trinity Way.

When pulling out you cannot see very far into the village without nosing the car into the roundabout. If a car is leaving the village and doesn't slow down the driver pulling out cannot see them.

We have had several near misses, several "two fingered salutes" from drivers who fail to slow down and think we are pulling out in front of them, when in fact we can't see them in time. Over the last 3 months we have had numerous speed bumps installed on the four roads that make up this estate.

In the two years we have lived here we have had no problem with speeding drivers on the estate. Its when you try to leave that the problems start.

Speed Bumps need to be installed on Church Road between Blackgate Lane and the mini roundabout, and probably on Coe Lane too before someone is killed.

Paul Cartwright, 31st December 2004

Seeing Cyclists

Dear Sir,

As a local resident of hesketh bank, I have to travel in and around the village frequently. I am amazed at the number of cyclists I see (or rather don't see) who think it's OK to ride around at night and early mornings ON the roads & footpaths, with no lights or bright clothing. I am constantly having to swerve around unlit cyclists, who also wear dark clothing !?! and when I sound my horn or shout "lights" at these *$£%^ 's I am given the reverse victory sign or told to £$%^& OFF !!!!.

I myself like to ride a bike, and wouldn't dream of going out at night without lights on my bike or bright clothing. What are the schools in and around the villages teaching them, when they do the cycling proficiency courses?

Bearing in mind the number of hgv's that now use our local roads for access to the many growers in the region, it's only a matter of time before a death or serious injury occurs. What are the local police doing about this? very little as far as I can see. I have even seen a cyclist riding past the local bobby at NIGHT with no lights!?!.

Parents should also take responsiblity for their childrens safety by fitting lights on their bikes.I don't want to read of a local childs death or serious injury on our roads due to the lack of parental common sense and an inability to act on the part of our local constabulary.

Steve Houghton, 31st December 2004

Mini Roundabout

Dear Ed,

We recently (about 18 months ago) moved into the Rowland Bardsley developement on Coe Lane. When we exit the development we use the mini round-a-bout on the junction of Meadow Way and Coe Lane. While we have lived here we have had one crash and several near misses where people have been coming from our left, and thus where we have right of way, and they don't seem to pay any attention to the mini round-a-bout.

People speed over it sometimes without even looking and I quite often have to beep my horn to remind people of my presence. I am worried that if people don't slow down and don't recognise the round-a-bout then a serious accident (i say losely) is inevitable. So if you're reading this, PLEASE pay attention and slow down.

Katie Cottrell, 28th December 2004

Tarleton Community Road Watch Scheme

I welcome the establishment of the Tarleton Community Road Watch Scheme but I am concerned that its terms of reference and performance targets are too narrow.

As a resident of Hesketh Lane, I have recently witnessed on two occasions near misses between motor cars and children riding on unlit bicycles at night. The University of Wharton in Pennsylvania has done extensive research into near misses with regard to major accidents. Their research shows that most catastrophic accidents are often preceded by a number of near misses which tended to evoke a "phew that was lucky" response rather than somebody drawing the appropriate lesson and putting in place necessary risk mitigation.

For any family in Tarleton and Hesketh Bank the loss of a child would be a catastrophe. The survival chances of a cyclist involved in an accident with a car are minimal as compared to the motorist. The dark blue school uniforms of the local school blend into the dusk at this time of year increasing inherent risk.

The Community Road Watch Scheme could play a useful role in supporting the Police, Community Service Officers and the schools in getting the message across.

Bob Robinson, 24th November, 2004


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