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The view from Katesgrove Hill

Category: Politics (page 1 of 16)

Accounting in the time of Covid-19

The Kennet at County Lock - 23 December 2019

The Kennet at County Lock – 23 December 2019

The statutory deadline for production, audit and sign off of Reading Borough Council (RBC) accounts for the year ended 31 March 2020 has been extended from 31 July to 30 November 2020. This is the result of new  Government regulations for local authority accounts and audit during the coronavirus pandemic.

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Matt Rodda MP interview during the pandemic

Matt Rodda at the Turbine House

Matt Rodda at the opening of the ‘In Reading Gaol by Reading Town’ exhibition at the Riverside Museum at Blake’s Lock

The Whitley Pump interviewed Matt Rodda in a socially-distanced telephone call on Friday 27 March. Parliament had closed for an early recess the previous Wednesday and we wanted to ask him about the adjustments that he had to make to the normal pattern of an MPs life.

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Matt Rodda speaks in Parliament about the new coronavirus bill

Matt Rodda, Reading East MP

Matt Rodda, Reading East MP (official portrait courtesy of the UK parliament).

Matt Rodda, MP for Reading East, spoke in the debate on the Coronavirus Bill on 23 March. The bill sets out the Government’s emergency powers to manage the coronavirus crisis in the United Kingdom.

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Urgent meeting of RBC policy committee 24 March at 5pm

Reading Borough Council is closed

Reading Borough Council is closed

Reading Borough Council (RBC) will hold an urgent meeting of the policy committee this evening, 24 March, at 5pm. The first item on the agenda is the RBC response to the coronavirus epidemic. This includes proposals for the organisation of meetings and decision making at the council in the current situation.

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Reading’s Biodiversity Action Plan

Kennet in January 2020

Kennet in January 2020

Reading does not currently have a biodiversity action plan (BAP). The 2005-15 plan has expired but the Reading Borough Council (RBC) Strategic Environment, Planning and Transport Committee may approve a new one for public consultation tonight, 16 March. The illustrated document is a fascinating overview of Reading’s natural environment.

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Reading rivals Southend in bid for city status

Southend Pier on a wet day in 2016

The MP for Southend West, Sir David Amess, is determined to see Southend granted city status. He is so determined that he secured an adjournment debate in the House of Commons on the subject before MPs left Parliament for Christmas on 20 December. Reading, like Southend, lost out in 2012 when three new cities were created as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

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Meet your Redlands Labour councillors at St Luke’s Church on 14 March

St Luke's parish hall

St Luke’s Parish Hall, Erleigh Road

Meet your Redlands Labour councillors at the Redlands Labour Ward Surgery on Saturday 14 March at 10.30am. They will be at the St Luke’s Church, Erleigh Road, Reading for an hour and a half.

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Meet your Green Party Redlands councillor on Erleigh Road on 15 March

Meet your Redlands ward Green party local councillor Jamie Whitham at the Redlands Ward Green Party street surgery on Sunday 15 March at 12.00pm. He will be around Erleigh Road, Reading for an hour and a half.

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Decking over the IDR – a conversation with Reg Vastern-King

Hexagon, Broad St Mall and Fountain House

Hexagon, Broad St Mall and Fountain House

Reg Vastern-King chair and founder of the Friends of the IDR had watched the events unfolding at the Reading Borough Council (RBC) planning applications committee when the proposal to build four residential towers at Broad St Mall was discussed. I met Reg at his favourite hostelry, the Reindeer on Southampton Street to ask him what he thought about it all.

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Meet your Whitley councillors at the Community café on 7 March

The South Reading Community Hub

You can meet your Whitley ward local councillors at the Whitley Labour Party Ward Surgery on Saturday 7 March at 10.30am. They will be at the Community café, Northumberland Avenue, Reading for an hour and a half.

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Meet your Katesgrove councillors at the Pau Brasil Café on 7 March

Pau Brasil, Mount Pleasant

Pau Brasil, Mount Pleasant

Meet your Katesgrove ward local councillors at the Katesgrove Labour Party Ward Surgery on Saturday 7 March at 10.30am. They will be at the Pau Brasil Café, 89 Mount Pleasant , Reading for an hour and a half.

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Meet your Church councillors at the Whitley Advice Shop on 7 March

Whitley Advice Shop

Whitley Advice Shop

Meet your Church ward local councillors’ at the Church Labour Ward Surgery on Saturday 7 March at 10.30am. They will be at the Whitley Advice Shop, near Foxhays Road, Northumberland Avenue, Reading for an hour and a half.

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Problems with council accounts ‘a disgrace’ says Councillor Ricky Duveen

Civic Offices April 2019

Liberal Democrat councillor Ricky Duveen used Reading Borough Council‘s (RBC) full council meeting on 25 February to say that the “never-ending issues with producing the council’s accounts are a disgrace.”

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Changes to Reading Borough Council fees and charges from 1 April

Whitley Pump - May 2016

Whitley Pump roundabout

Reading Borough Council (RBC) has a schedule of charges for everything from overdue library book fines to planning fees and advertising on the Whitley Pump roundabout. The list covers 26 pages and is a fascinating insight into the minutiae of local government, Reading style.

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Council tax proposals for next year will be discussed at Tuesday’s council meeting

Reading Borough Council Civic Offices

Reading Borough Council (RBC) will discuss a 3.99% increase in council tax at the full council meeting on 25 February. This includes a general increase of 1.99% (2019/20 2.99%) as well as an additional 2% which will be spent solely on adult social care. RBC is also responsible for collecting ‘precepts’ for the police and fire authorities with council tax payments.
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Meet your Redlands Green Party councillor on Christchurch Road on 16 February

The Green Party councillor for Redlands ward, Jamie Whitham, will be meeting constituents on Christchurch Road on Sunday 16 February at 7.00pm.

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Meet your Whitley councillors at the Whitley Wood Community Centre on 15 February

The Whitley Wood Community Centre

The Whitley Wood Community Centre

You can meet your Reading Borough councillors at the Whitley Labour Party Ward Surgery on Saturday 15 February at 10.30am. They will be at the Whitley Wood Community Centre, Swallowfield Drive, Reading RG2 8UH for an hour and a half.

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Big Brother RBC

Reading Borough Crest

Reading Borough Council (RBC) plan to spend £2.5 million over the next four years implementing a new customer service strategy. This will offer more online services and includes a system to hold all the data they have about us in one place.

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Meet your Church councillors at the Kung Fu Kitchen on 1 February

Meet your Reading Borough councillors at the Church Ward Councillor surgery on Saturday 1 February at 10.30am. They will be at the Kung Fu Kitchen, 80 Christchurch Road, RG2 7AZ, Reading for an hour and a half.

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Meet your Whitley councillors at the Community café on 1 February

Whitley Community Hub, Northumberland Avenue

Image (c) Huma Jehan

Meet your Reading Borough councillors at the Whitley Labour Party Ward Surgery on Saturday 1 February at 10.30am. They will be at the Community café, Northumberland Avenue, Reading for an hour and a half.

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