Cllrs Steve Iles (Strood North), Cllr Josie Iles (Strood South) and Cllr Chitty (Strood North) with Nina of Network Rail and staff of WPB Contractors.
Councillors Steve Iles and Jane Chitty of Strood North, and Councillor Josie Iles of Strood South, were delighted with the progress being made by regeneration works taking place at Strood Station.
The Conservatives’ longstanding commitment to regeneration across Medway saw the Council successfully launch a bid and secure funding from the Local Government Fund to partner Network Rail in this development.
The £2.8 million improvement project will bring numerous benefits to commuters; including a new waiting room, bigger booking hall, improved toilet facilities and additional ticket gates. The new and improved station is expected to reopen to the public before the end of the year.
Option C Thames Crossing
On Tuesday 12 April, the Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling confirmed the preferred route for the Lower Thames Crossing which will be as follows:
- a bored tunnel crossing under the River Thames east of Gravesend and Tilbury (Location C)
- a new road north of the river which will join the M25 between junctions 29 and 30 (Route 3)
- a new road south of the river which will join the A2 east of Gravesend (the Western Southern Link)
You can view the Department for Transport press release here.
The Medway Area
Medway Council is preparing a new Local Plan to provide direction on the future growth of the area. The aim of the Local Plan is to ensure that Medway grows sustainably, to provide land for the homes, jobs and services that people need, whilst protecting and enhancing the qualities of the area’s environment and heritage.
The formal consultation runs from 16 January to 6 March 2017. Full details of the consultation document, supporting information, survey form and consultation events are available to view on the council’s website at: www.medway.gov.uk/futuremedway.
Rochester and Strood Conservatives are pleased to welcome back into the local Conservative Party, Strood South Cllr Mark Joy who has been sitting as an Independent.
Rochester and Strood Chairman Cllr Trevor Clarke said:
Following the historic decision to vote to leave the European Union in June’s Referendum and the determination of Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May to deliver that exit, we have seen many former members return to the Party.
We welcome Mark and look forward to him representing the residents of Strood South alongside our other two councillors there. The recent by-election highlighted the many issues affecting Strood South and the need for working together to help deliver the ongoing improvements the ward needs and the residents deserve. With a strengthened team in the ward, we are determined to do that.
Having campaigned for Josie during the recent by-election, Mark has now joined the Conservative Group and is looking forward to working with Josie and John in representing the residents of Strood South.
Deputy Mayoress at the Opening Ceremony with Cllrs Mr and Mrs Iles with Kelly Tolhurst MP
Rochester and Strood MP Kelly Tolhurst joined her Conservative councillor colleagues Josie and Steve Iles and the Deputy Mayor of Medway Cllr Gloria Opara at the official opening of the refurbished McDonald’s on Medway Valley Leisure Park.
Enhancements to the restaurant include table service with customers able to order from the new digital kiosks as well as from a member of staff at the till. Free to use tablets have also been installed at some tables for customers who want to check their news feed, emails or play games.
After a short campaign, Josie Iles was elected as Councillor for Strood South. The Medway Messenger reported on the low turnout and the impact it had on UKIP.
Josie with fellow Conservative councillors and members at the count
Josie Iles was declared the winner of the Strood South by-election with a 203 majority over Labour. The Conservatives overturned a 238 UKIP majority from May 2015 to take back the seat.
I am delighted to be back. I should like to thank the residents of Strood South who kept faith with me and voted for me in yesterday’s by-election. To all residents of Strood South it will be an honour and privilege to once again represent you and be your strong local voice.
I will honour my pledge to work for you and with you to resolve issues with the very best outcomes and deliver the improvements our area needs and deserves.
Jnct Dart Close and Darnley Road Carriageway Resurfacing
Darnley Road experiences heavy traffic flows and being a major bus route through the ward it is important to make sure repairs and improvements are made to the road surface.
Other highway improvement works carried out by Conservative-run Medway Council in Strood South included the resurfacing of Parkfields, the whole of Lancelot Avenue and works to improve the junctions of Dart Close and Columbine Road with Darnley Road.
Strood Community Hub
Josie had the opportunity previously to campaign and work with her Conservative Council colleagues to develop the community hub in Strood High Street. There was a million pound investment into this one-stop centre for all Council services and the old library was relocated here too into purpose-built surroundings as part of the project.
It is important that local residents have the right and the opportunity to access and enjoy modern services in safe, purpose-built premises. Full details of the services provided out of the hub can be found on the Council’s website.
Many of the everyday issues that residents face in the ward (including abandoned vehicles, blue badges, bus passes, pest control, safer communities, trees, untidy land etc) can be dealt with face-to-face at the hub.
Josie at the Rede Common site
Rede Common, or Sandy Banks as it is sometimes known, in Strood South ward offers a super place for walkers and outdoor activities.
Over 11 hectares of acid grassland with areas of scrub, this open space provides a vital home for wildlife and flora. The site is owned by Medway Council who work in conjunction with the excellent local Friends of Rede Common group to maintain and protect this unique greenspace right here in the centre of Strood.
The Friends have a website which details the history of the site and how you can be involved in their conservation work.