Wednesday, February 20, 2013
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n illegal parking: Out of 31 blue badges inspected in Hillingdon recently, eight were being used fraudulently Contributed
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Quarter of blue badges misused
Police operation results in eight prosecutions by Alan Hayes firstname.lastname@example.org
A crackdown on the fraudulent use of disabled driver blue badges has resulted in eight prosecutions since April last year.
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Of the 31 badges inspected in this period, just over a quarter of them were being used with no disabled person present. Hillingdon Council said it regularly carries out inspections of vehicles displaying a blue badge and has the power to seize badges
and issue tickets to those using them incorrectly. This is the first year it has taken legal action against those using the badges deceitfully. The council has also said it is reviewing the new brown badge bays in Belmont Road, close to the Jobcentre Plus building, following a few complaints by people who have received a parking ticket. The brown badge system reserves bays in all council operated car parks plus a few streets for drivers aged 65 or more who have acquired the permit. Nigel Dicker, Hillingdon
Council’s deputy director of residents’ services, said: “The council undertook a statutory consultation process and invited the public to have their say on the proposed bays at Belmont Road. “There were no objections raised during the consultation and as a result the bays were installed in December 2012. “The parking signage on Belmont Road was approved by the Department for Transport. “However, in light of the recent feedback we are reviewing whether the layout could be improved.”
Community centre in party hours bid
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A COMMMUNITY centre is vying for a licence to hold parties for non-members. Hayes and Harlington Community Centre, in Albert Road, currently has a club licence which permits it to stage functions and serve alcohol, mainly to guests who are members. But with visitor numbers having dwindled in recent years, the centre is applying for a premises licence, which would enable it to accept bookings from the wider public and bring in some extra revenue.
Mark Collins, administrator at the centre, said: “We will still be holding our own functions, but we get a lot of enquiries from relatives of members and neighbours for wedding anniversaries and birthdays, and we have to turn them away. “This licence would remove the restrictions. “We are well used during the day. A few years ago we were doing OK and we could sell enough tickets for our evening events internally, but numbers have dropped and like everyone else we are struggling a bit.”
The centre has applied to stay open and serve alcohol – and provide live music and entertainment – until midnight throughout the week, and 1am at weekends, with later opening hours at Christmas and New Year’s Eve, although Mr Collins said that it would still close before then on most nights. “These sorts of members clubs are quickly becoming a thing of the past, so we need to broaden our horizons.” The Hayes and Harlington Community Centre can be contacted on 020 8573 5273.
Grow squatters await court decision The Mall Uxbridge. Tel: 01895 233926
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THE squatters at the Grow Heathrow community garden have been told to expect a decision on their appeal against eviction by the end of the month. The environmental campaigners took their latest fight against eviction from land in Vineries Close, Sipson,
to the Court of Appeal last month. The young activists took over the disputed site, directly in the path of the third runway planned for Heathrow by the previous government, in March 2010, and turned it into a thriving community garden.
A judge gave the possession order in favour of the landowner, Imran Malik, last July, after a legal fight that had run for more than two years, but Grow Heathrow appealed to the High Court on human rights grounds – the first time this defence has been used in an eviction case.