21 Aug 2014

Vacant land on Marquis Street

Here is an update I have received regarding the vacant plot on Marquis Street which has been a long running bone of contention in the the area.


Dear Cllr Cleary,

Thank you for your enquiry regarding the above land in Marquis street. We have received several complaints from residents dating back to 2011 regarding this land which as you mention is frequently fly-tipped. We have carried out an extensive investigation to identify the owner of the land as we can only exercise our powers regarding accumulations against the rightful owners of private land. 

Despite carrying out land searches and making enquiries relating to addresses across the UK, we have been unable to obtain a response from whom we believe is the rightful owner. We have served several legal notices on the owner to clear the land since 2011 with copies sent to all known addresses but in all cases the notices have not been complied with and we have resorted to carrying out the works in default. This has meant that the cost we have incurred, for which we have little budget for has been placed as a charge on the land. 

As Environmental Health have no means to erect a fence and currently I do not believe there is compulsory purchase process operating within the Council we are unfortunately in the position whereby we can only continue to retrospectively order for the land to cleared and carry out works in default should the owner continue in failing to maintain their land. This does however incur additional mounting costs to the Council that are unlikely to be reclaimed in the near future. 

In relation to your specific enquiry an officer from Environmental Health has visited the site to carry out a survey and noted that items have been deposited on the land. Before carrying out any further works in default we must adhere to our policy and give the owner the opportunity to clear the land. A notice will be served imminently to this effect. 

Environmental Health are always looking for solutions to problems and for new ways of effective yet efficient working to help protect the people of Wirral. We would welcome any ideas or support regarding schemes that could assist us or that require our support in achieving our common objectives. 

Whilst I understand this information does not offer a solution to the long term problem regarding this and similar pieces of land across the Borough, I trust that this information is of some benefit and if you wish to discuss this matter further please do not hesitate to contact me. 

Yours Sincerely

Environmental Health Team

4 Aug 2014

Statement re bedroom tax demonstration

The Green Party issues the following statement in response to today's anti-bedroom tax march through Birkenhead.

The Green Party has opposed the bedroom tax from the start and actively campaigns with AntiBedroom Tax groups calling for its immediate abolition

The Labour Party's pledge to abolish the bedroom tax if it wins the election in 2015 should be backed by a nationwide campaign calling for immediate abolition and by guidance to local councils on how to minimise its impact now.

Wirral Council should follow up its welcome decision not to challenge tenants who have won appeals -- a decision taken under pressure from Green  councillor Pat Cleary and ABT campaigners --, by not sending representatives to lower tribunal hearings. This would save taxpayers' money and greatly assist hard-pressed tenants.