North Tyneside Council is a listening council and it has delivered on a lot of projects, which have been driven by residents, community groups and, of course, the Whitley Bay Spanish City/Dome regeneration.
The safety improvements that are nearly complete on The Links dual carriageway have been driven by local councillors acting on residents’ concerns in St Mary’s.
The council listened and the new single carriageway system will be safe and sensible for motorists and pedestrians, and the noise level of motorists, especially in the summer, racing along the front, hopefully will be a distant memory.
However, it seems the council will not look at alternatives regarding the budget, presented by the Conservatives, which would have reduced the council tax burden by two per cent and given over-65s a three per cent reduction. There is a lot of disquiet as residents receive their council tax demands.
Conservatives also looked at a return to weekly bin collections, and the roads and pavements in the borough require remedial attention. The major roads that carry a lot of traffic are in bad repair.
Residents wonder what the plan for this financial year is with respect to road repairs and levelling of pavements, which can and do cause some nasty falls, sending people to hospital.
The other major concern is the Murton Gap development, which people feel will strangulate the area, with increased traffic on already busy and damaged roads. Schools are already full and GP surgeries will not cope with the extra influx of patients.
This has to be looked at seriously and considered before houses are built and the realisation that the residents cannot access the services they need.
There are alternatives and these should be looked at and listened to.