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Motorbikes, Mowbray Road and the Pyramid Centre - a walk in Bretton (part one)

Chaz Fenner originally stood last year but elections were put off until May 2021 thanks to Covid. 
Chaz pyramid
Chaz outside the Pyramid Centre

But on May 6, following a long campaign of door knocking and surgeries, he was successful in Bretton - gaining 1030 votes to take a seat for the Conservatives at Peterborough City Council.

In the first of our walkabouts series with newly elected councillors, Peterborough Matters went out with Chaz for a mini-tour of Bretton, starting and ending at the Cresset via Bretton Park, the Pyramid Centre and Peterborough Lions Rugby Club. We also spoke about some of the other matters in the parish, such as speed limits.

Here is part one of the issues discussed on that rainy Friday afternoon - in Chaz's own words.

Bretton 1Scooters and even motorbikes have used these paths. By Google

Scooters and motorbikes.

The big electric scooters are a nightmare - it's been ongoing through the pandemic and before it. In 2019 we had motorcycles whizzing round while we were doing a litter pick and they came towards us.

I reported it to the police - they will only come out at that moment - I phoned them up and someone else had phoned them up from Westwood as well. So they sent a car to both locations.

They were nicked scooting back towards Ravensthorpe, near the underpass. That's the sort of thing going on at the moment, but it's catching them in the act and having the police presence to be in multiple places.

 

Bretton pathA youngster - who was riding responsibly on the path just off Flaxland. Others have not been so careful. By John Baker

I'm going to be working with the new Police and Crime Commissioner to get more bobbies on the beat in Bretton. 

We've had motorcycles sweeping up here, unlicensed, with no number plates. People say there's nothing for the kids to do - but these bikes are illegal and shouldn't be on public roads, let alone footpaths.

If you've got a family, two kids, a dog, a buggy, it's so dangerous. I think it's a lack of education about what people can and can't do.
(pointing to a property) There's a lady here who has reported motorbikes coming up and down this path. 


On campaigning: 

We had a good response on the door. I wear my heart on my sleeve and what you see is what you get. The only guarantee I give is what I told people on the door - to fight for them and for Bretton.

Whatever Bretton thinks it needs, if the majority wants it I'll fight for it, and even the minority - if they say we need XYZ in the park, then fine.

Scott and I do both roving and static surgeries, via door-knocking and Zoom.

We have the technology, why not use it, especially for those who can't get out.

 

Chaz weedsThese sticky weeds are blocking plants such as bluebells from growing. Chaz said: "It's gone mad this year with this, it's horrendous. I really don't know why there's so much of it." . By John Baker

On a new play area

I'm currently chair of the Ability Play Park Bretton, and we are becoming a charity. We want to get a disability play park - a wheelchair swing so that anyone with a radar key can use it.

There isn't one at the moment in the whole city and we are looking at raising £30,000 for a swing and a roundabout, which can allow able bodied children to go on as well, with their siblings.

I've been involved for about two years on this. My grandson goes to Little Miracles and he's three. He can't walk or talk. He has 3P deletion syndrome and Hirschsprung Disease, which means he has a bag still at his age. He's got so much that he's got going against him, and that's why I want the park.

We have a Facebook page and now we're coming out of lockdown we can start thinking about fundraising again. PCVS have given us guidance. We have some nice community-minded residents on the committee as well, which is great. They're on board, I'm on board, the other two councillors on board.

We have our next meeting next month - we have a constitution and we're ready to go.

 

Bretton MowbrayChaz is petitioning to get the speed limit dropped. By Google

 

Mowbray Road and 60mph limits

The other thing I've got going on at the moment is a petition for Mowbray Road, which is going through council. It now has to be read out in council itself.

Just off Bretton Way is Mowbray Road. As you come off the Bretton roundabout it's 60mph, but on the left is Dunsberry, a residential street, and there's the Crematorium on the right, with slow moving traffic going in and out. 

The residents would like it brought down to 40mph all the way. The council has said it can do it, but only up to the crematorium, and then back up to 60mph. What's the point in that - there's then a double S bend, and then Marholm which is 30mph. Why not leave it at 40mph all the way? 

Families walk up to Marholm and use the road to go the pub and so on. 

I've done a video with Paul (Bristow) and we could see the vehicles coming off the roundabout at 60mph.

There's a few who say of Paul 'photo op, photo op', but he's out there doing things.

 

Bretton 3The Pyramid Centre is 'in need of TLC'. By Google

The Pyramid Centre

It needs investment. It's owned by a landlord in London and we have fought tooth and nail to get leaks and the roof repaired. We never hear from him after the council sold it off, and now the council pay rent to him.

If nothing is done down here then it will get worse. I've had residents tell me they don't feel safe here - he's relatively young, in his 30s, and he says he doesn't feel safe because there's lads congregating, and it feels intimidating for him and his family.

Simon is trying to make The Oxcart into a family pub, and is working hard for the community, but it needs a lot of TLC. One day in the summer we came out of the parish council meeting here and kids had flung a bin on the roof. 

Chaz pyramid 2Chaz says that the Oxcart is a good family pub. By John Baker

One of the popular things at the community centre was the Sunday Lunch Club. People come from all the areas, from sheltered housing, used to come here for bingo, a laugh and a dinner, for £4.

The people behind it had to pay rent for it as well - it's a community service, so why are we (the parish) charging for them?

I've also got a dog walking thing on my Facebook page on Saturday mornings, and I want to bring that back and get people back out and talking to each other.

There were people struggling in the pandemic and I tried to help. I would get back from work and sometimes get a message from Corona Heroes asking if I could make a delivery. There were many people doing so across the city who never put anything on social media about what they were doing - you have to take your hat off to them.