Cinema Site Update

The Times of Tunbridge Wells recently reported that the Carlyle Group was in the final stages of an agreement to sell the site to site to developer, Bellhouse Joseph for development of a hotel. While there is speculation that negotiations have fallen through there may still be a deal in the offing.

The 1.3 acre site is reported to have been bought by the Carlyle Group for £9.9 million in 2011.

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Lib Dems celebrate huge vote surge in Southborough North by-election

Liberal Democrat campaigners in Tunbridge Wells and Southborough are celebrating a massive surge in support in Thursday’s by-election. The seat is one of the Conservatives’ safest in the Borough where they polled 60% of the vote this May. However, they hung on by just 49 votes from a strong Lib Dem campaign led by candidate Trevor Poile.

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Lib Dems want street lighting answers

Kent County Council has announced that it has plans to end its unpopular part-time lighting scheme introduced recently in our streets.

However, there is uncertainty as to when this will actually happen as the plan requires £40m to convert the street lights to low energy bulbs.

The Council does not yet have this money and it may take years to secure.

“Why didn’t the Council focus on getting the funding for these improvements earlier,” says Trevor Poile.

“With the money in place the street lights could have been upgraded without the need to switch off our lights after midnight.”

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Getting serious about mental health services

One in four of us experience mental health problems at some point in our lives. But for too long it has been neglected by the NHS.

Lib Dem parliamentary campaigner for Tunbridge Wells, James MacCleary said, “It’s so important that mental health should not be ignored or stigmatised. It should be taken as seriously as physical health.”

The Lib Dems are using £400 million to help people with mental health problems get the right support early on, such as talking or psychological therapies, and are introducing waiting times so people will know for the first time when they can expect treatment.

James added, “It’s great that the Lib Dems are introducing the first ever waiting times for mental health services, but there is more to do to ensure the essential changes needed in mental health care happen.

“That’s why we are pledging an extra £8 billion a year for the NHS in the next Parliament, including half a billion dedicated to improving mental health care.”

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Royal Victoria Hall must be at the heart of our community

With the recent closure of the Royal Victoria Hall, the future of the building has been the topic of much concern recently.

For many years the Hall has been part of plans for a hub in the centre of Southborough involving the Town Council, Tunbridge Wells Borough Council and Kent County Council.

“The three Councils must work hard to ensure that the Royal Victoria Hall forms part of any future plans,” says Trevor Poile.

“The Hall is part of Southborough’s history. I believe that all opportunities should be explored to improve and enhance the Hall as part of any redevelopment.”

 

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More progress needed on cinema site

Lib Dems call on council to get site valued and consider buying it

Lib Dem campaigners are demanding more progress is made on the cinema site in Tunbridge Wells town centre after their success in getting the site demolished and cleared.

There have been recent rumours that the site could be put up for sale by its current owners and local Lib Dems want to see the council take positive action on behalf of the community.

“It is time that the council seriously considered taking over the site in the interests of local people.” says Lib Dem parliamentary campaigner, James MacCleary.

“The current owners have the Conservatives in their pockets and local people lost faith in their ability to resolve the issue.”

St John’s campaigner, Trevor Poile, adds: “Working with the community we’ve finally got some progress on the site after all these years.

“Now we want to make sure that we keep up the pressure by getting the site valued in case it goes on the market so that the council can consider buying it for the community.”

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