Category Archives: Uncategorized

James Upjohn For Ashurst?

The Independent Candidate for Ashurst wants to be a councillor to tackle problems nobody else bothers about. As usual, probably as in every ward in this Borough, flooding is featured. The culprits are named. And it’s worth remembering the ward has been minus one councillor who chose not to attend and represent the public.

One phrase from James Upjohn tells you why Ashurst needs him. He wants to be “A Councillor with a passion for transforming Ashurst from decent to AMAZING”. 

His mandate?

1) Introduction of mobile CCTV to deter nuisance off road bikes, fly-tippers & litter louts.

2) Better education in schools around litter to encourage a generational change in Skelmersdale.

3) Continue to Lobby United Utilities, LCC and WLBC to find a solution to our flooded Subways.

4) Lobby for change to the bulky waste collection service policies to allow provisions for those that are not in a position to use the service effectively.

5) Continue to Lobby LLC to provide more grit bins.

6) Establish an events committee at WLBC to discuss introducing some annual town events.

7) Introduce more litter bins, especially at our litter hotspots, like bridges. Also add anti-litter signs across the ward in highly littered areas.

8) Work to create a more business friendly council that encourages business growth so that we can benefit from increased business rate receipts.

9) Continue to monitor and report the potholes all over Ashurst and Lobby LCC to fix them.

10) Continue to fight for our green spaces and cloughs to be given the proper recognition and routine maintenance that they deserve.

11) Create schemes to give volunteers the proper recognition they deserve.

12) Encourage local schools to make better use of our outdoor spaces and look at setting up and supporting outdoor classrooms in our Cloughs and heritage sites.

13) Encourage better use of social media use to keep residents informed.

14) Re-establish monthly surgeries to encourage residents to speak up and have their voices heard.

15) Work to fix local issues from within our existing councils to make sure we already receive adequate services for all the services we are currently paying for.

16) Look to increase our clean & green team numbers to be more in line with neighbouring councils.

Stop Press

A local poll has provided an indication of a drift away of support from the large political parties in West Lancashire. The furore over attacks made against Independent candidates suggests people may use their votes to protest. Issues include flooding and drainage, the probable development of greenbelt land, the regular uncontrolled council tax increases, and the appalling state of roads that cause damage to cars.

West Lancashire Encouraged By Latest Coronavirus Report

The West Lancashire Ormskirk & Southport NHS Trust hospitals have reported one new person had a confirmed positive test result reported on 20th April.

Between 14th April 2021 and 20th April 2021, 13 people had a confirmed positive test result. This shows a decrease of 40.9% compared to the previous 7 days.

There were no deaths within 28 days of a positive test for coronavirus reported on 20th April 2021.

Between 14th April 2021 and 20th April 2021, there have been no deaths within 28 days of a positive coronavirus test. This shows no change compared to the previous 7 days.

An Ode To Cllr O’Toole

On reading the “Dear Resident” letter of David O’Toole, a leading, senior, Conservative with all his posts and pomp, including something like five important roles, wanting to be re-elected next month, I was reminded of our article “Cllr O’Toole No Show In Halsall” in April 2019.

“Cllr O’Toole received, from LCC 2017/18, £10,466 basic + £6,865 Special Responsibility Allowance +£150 ICT Allowance + £143 Subsistance + £2,535 Mileage, all = £20,159. For 2018/19 the basic has been increased to £10,675. Source LCC.

“Cllr O’Toole received, from Lancashire Combined Fire Authority for 2017/18, basic £2,612.93 + Special Responsibity £4,962.87 + Travel& Subsistence £304.65, Total = £7,880.84. For 2018/19, O’Toole basic £2,784.96 + Special Responsibility £5,289.60 + Travel & subsistence £785.25 Total = £8,859.81 He is “Majority Opposition Group Spokesperson”! Almost £1,000 increase year on year! Source LCFA.

“Cllr O’Toole received, from WLBC for which he claimed £4,842 + £107.96 Travel & Subsistence = £4,949. 96. Source WLBC. =Total Income £33,968.77, a living example of why the number of elected members should be cut from whatever the authority council tax payers are increasingly funding, many from lower incomes”. 

The same is true in 2021. Council tax rises higher than pensions.

Hence we quote the short but well known stanza [forgetting the Virgins] by Robert Herrick, as an ode to Cllr O’Toole.

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying
And this same flower that smiles today
Tomorrow will be dying.

The Halsall Independent Neil Campbell “Response To Westley”

“It’s quite ironic that David Westley mentions an IDB now rather than when he as leader of a conservative run WLBC “as you and your party couldn’t be bothered to attend any of the intermediate drainage forum groups run by the NFU – not one!” This is typical of petty party politics being conducted whilst nothing ever gets achieved.

“It’s been 7 years since the Environment Agency announced it was relieving itself from the responsibility of water pumping duties for the Alt Crossens catchment area and in that time the conservative and labour run council has failed West Lancashire and done diddly squat!

“As for your inferior thoughts on independents rather than the old fashion party system, its independents who work bloody hard for their residents instead of following the colour of their rosette!

“Interesting to note that you failed to tackle me on my other comments raised, well I suppose that’s a bit hard to defend really”.

Westley Replies To Halsall Independent

“Hullo, it’s me again.

“It is Neil Campbell who is displaying his ignorance on drainage. While LCC is responsible for highway drainage, it is WLBC that will decide on whether to set up an Internal Drainage Board to take on responsibility for land drainage and the much talked about pumps.

“It is also WLBC who administer the receipts from the Community Infrastructure Levy and can decide to spend substantial money on drainage and highways.

“This would be a means of taking forward projects in partnership with LCC or United Utilities by providing match funding for investment on our roads, flood prevention and improved drainage.

“Neil Campbell and other independents can never deliver such important changes as they invariably concentrate on personal attacks or petty politicking”.

Whoops, I knew the Aughton door to door lies saga would haunt me!

The Halsall Election Saga, Continued

It should be noted and understood that all Tory electioneering material is “Promoted by David Westley, on behalf of” named Tory candidates all at 72c New Court Way, Ormskirk.

Westley promoted the unfortunate “Election news for Halsall” with its poor grammar. Teacher didn’t have her promoted homework checked?

The Independent candidate for Halsall, Neil Campbell, wrote in WLR comments about “Not only poor spelling but some rather misleading information, investment in drainage and roads is a County Council matter to which is David O’Toole’s responsibility!

“As yet, County Cllr O’Toole (who is also seeking election) has failed to respond to Halsall Parish Council in regards to the disappearance of capital investment funding for the upgrading the failed surface water drainage system promised a year ago for New Cut Lane! A lane that our tory candidate Denise Hirrell happens to reside on!

“If the conservative candidate doesn’t know of the serious local issues on the road she actually lives on, God help the rest of Halsall if she does get elected! If Denise was that bothered about local problems and issues such as Moss Rd, Segars Lane, Carr Moss Lane (the list is endless), why hasn’t Denise Hirrell taken up one of the vacancies and volunteered her services on the Parish Council?

“Then she may learn something about Halsall otherwise a vote for the conservative candidate is a wasted vote in Halsall, a bit like our previous conservative Borough Councillor who was not only ousted, but a street party was arranged celebrating her timely departure”.

Labour Replies To “Labour Called Out In Burscough For Misleading Statement”

Gareth Dowling


“The text of the leaflet story is copied below, for everyone’s information. The flooding and drainage cabinet working group was set up to work with partner agencies and local flood groups to try resolve some of the issues we have in West Lancashire. Its terms of reference (copied below) are wide-ranging (specifically part b), to ensure it works with any body which can help, including local flood groups. 

The Chair, Cllr Adam Yates, has confirmed to me that Burscough Flooding Group are scheduled to be invited to a meeting of the committee. Officers will be in touch with this invitation and full details. You may wish to contact the borough engineer if you have any specific queries about the committee –

“We would be happy to make the position clearer in future literature”. 

To which Gavin Rattray


“Your email doesn’t deal with the issue I raised which were the inaccuracies within the Working Hard for West Lancashire Leaflet scanned below. It is the May 6th election one with pictures and contact details of each of you.

Have you stopped circulating the leaflet? Have you published and circulated a retraction?

Yours faithfully

Gavin Rattray – Secretary Burscough Flooding Group (Burscough’s FLAG)

What Costs WLBC £33,411.96 At The Mercure Atlantic Tower Hotel Liverpool?

The Tory Party thinks Labour is set to bankrupt the Borough Council.  Perhaps they are, by spending council tax in Liverpool?

With reference to the WLBC Over £500 Spending Report July/August 2020 Other Service Items, a list of Subsistence and Expenses shows WLBC paid

“02/07/2020 Mercure Atlantic Tower Hotel Liverpool – Subsistence £4,033.96 Expenses, £5,527.55 Expenses, £535.62 Expenses, 06/07/2020  – Subsistence £4,196.26 Expenses £4,786.45 Expenses. 16/07/2020 –Subsistence £2,098.06, £3,122.45. 28/07/2020 Subsistence £1,389.22, £600.00, £2,033.15. Expenses 29/07/2020 Subsistence £700.00, £1,741.00, £1,130.79 Expenses. 05/08/2020 Subsistence £1,517.45 Expenses = £33,411.96”.

Expenses and Subsistence? Who, and why?

West Lancashire Coronavirus Infections Increase

The West Lancashire Ormskirk & Southport NHS Trust hospitals have  advised us seven new people had a confirmed positive coronavirus test result reported today, 19th April. This equalled the largest number in the County.

Between 13th April 2021 and 19th April 2021, 19 people had a confirmed positive test result. This shows a decrease of 5% compared to the previous 7 days.

There were 0 deaths within 28 days of a positive test for coronavirus reported on 19th April 2021.

Between 13th April 2021 and 19th April 2021, there have been 0 deaths within 28 days of a positive coronavirus test. This shows no change compared to the previous 7 days.