Start on a positive note!

May 15, 2007 9:34 PM

First of all I would like to give a huge thankyou to all my supporters and helpers in the local elections. I'm delighted to be elected for Spotland & Falinge and I intend to serve my ward and town well. As promised I will work for the whole of Spotland and Falinge alongside my hard-working colleagues Councillor Barbara Todd and Councillor Peter Clegg. I'm particularly proud that my whole campaign was run in an honest, fair and democratic way. I've been proposed for a number of committee positions and I promise to use my positions wisely! The future of Healey Dell and the TBA site is a particular concern of mine and I look forward to getting more closely involved as a Councillor.

Now, for something I've been thinking about for a while. You can go to almost any shop or public place in Rochdale and hear the same conversation; on a hot day it is too hot, on a wet rainy day, it is too wet, and on a cold day it is too cold! We, as a community, have a wonderful knack of promoting the negative. Yes, it is all too easy to point out the negatives in our town. But what are you comparing Rochdale with? I've worked in most towns across the UK and yet I'm very, very proud to live in Rochdale. Just look at the wonderful architecture in the town centre, not to mention the magnificent Town Hall! Broadfield Park and Queens Park are looking spectacular. If you haven't walked around these parks then I strongly urge you to do so. We are also very fortunate to live ten minutes in any direction from some spectacular countryside. Reading the Rochdale Online message board its clear that Malcolm and several others also stress our positives and share some of my thoughts. The town centre redevelopment plans look amazing and will rejuvenate Rochdale. I too am particularly excited about the proposed Arts venue!

I've lived in Rochdale for 30 years and consider myself a proud Rochdalian. Seven years ago my family moved into the Old Vicarage, St. Clements. At that time there were up to 60 youths drinking and generally making a nuisance within the church grounds. Broken glass, fly tipping, graffiti and vandalism were rampant. Now it is absolutely beautiful and if you have the time I urge you to walk around and enjoy the tranquil gardens. We turned the situation around by working together as a local community. Together its people power that made the difference.

We need to stand together as a community and say enough is enough - we won't stand for anti-social behaviour any more! If you see a problem report it and keep on reporting it until you get a result - don't give up. One of the main positives about Rochdale and Rochdalians that I haven't mentioned is our strength of character and I would love to see more of it!