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UNDER FIRE Sandbach news, sport and leisure

Sept/Oct FREE

Residents call for an independent enquiry A SANDBACH residents group has called on the Government to launch an enquiry into Cheshire East Council. Members of the Hands Off Our Sandbach group have created an online petition to be handed in to Secretary of State Sajid Javid. The petition, which had more than 1,700 signatures as we went to press, calls for an independent inquiry following the falsification of air quality data at the council. In response the council’s acting chief executive Kath O’Dwyer and leader Rachel Bailey have penned an open letter to the Secretary of State on behalf of the council. The online petition, created by HOOS member David Burnand, states: “The recent admission by Cheshire East Council that an officer or officers have deliberately and systematically manipulated and falsified air quality data readings between 2012 to 2014 has finally destroyed what remained of our confidence and belief in our

council members and officers. “This latest confession comes on the back of the: • Suspension of the CEO Mike Suarez, in April 2017 pending an investigation. • Resignation of Mr Michael Jones over contracts awarded to his personal physiotherapist’s firm in 2015. • Lyme Green Waste Transfer Station Fiasco in 2013/14. • The suspension of Bill Norman, Head of Legal Services in July 2017. “Cheshire East has now initiated yet another investigation into the behaviour of senior officers connected with the deliberately and systematically manipulation and falsification of air quality data readings. “In addition Cheshire Police are also investigating the matter. “We believe that Cheshire East Council has therefore lost all credibility with the residents and electorate of our region and we call upon the Secretary of State to initiate an independent

enquiry into the actions and behaviour of the members and officers to restore public confidence.” Sandbach councillor and Labour group leader Sam Corcoran said: “We have been calling since March for an external investigation, reporting within three months to group leaders, into the culture of the organisation and allegations of bullying.” The council letter states: “The council faces some difficult organisational challenges in

addressing what are legacy matters, relating to the period of organisational leadership of the previous council leader. “Some of these matters are the subject of ongoing police and audit investigation and/or internal disciplinary or member conduct proceedings. “Nevertheless, we have approached these matters in a robust and transparent way and will continue to do so, putting as much information as we can in the public domain as (cont. on p.7)


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Five tweets on Sandbach @HOOS_Sandbach #Sandbach Residents call on Government to launch enquiry into ‘scandal-hit’ #Cheshire East

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Day of dance by Stewart Green

THE final Day of Dance in Sandbach got off a very wet start on September 9. But a bright afternoon in the town centre saw nine groups of morris dancers perform to crowds of onlookers. Organisers Lynn Purcell and Ray Archer have decided to call it a day after seven years of this spectacle in the Sandbach diary. Because of the rain the dancers continued performing in St Mary’s Church Hall and under a gazebo at the Old Hall until the sun shone through making this a memorable final outing for the organisers.

A highlight of the festival’s seven years was the inclusion this month of the ‘Danze de Sans Chuse’ a group of dancers from Spain who got a great reception from the spectators. Next year the morris dancers will be invited to a completely new event which will he held on May 19 when Sandbach Town Council will stage a special History Day. This will include the Northwest Town Criers Competition, which had until this year been held as part of the Transport Festival. There will also be other historically based activities at the May event, to be organised by Sandbach Town Council.

@SandbacSchRugby Mrs Leech and her team of parents raised £635.53 at Sandbach Day of Dance. Unbelievable effort!! Thanks to all those who supported the team! @najmafinlay Come to our brilliant event Sandbach Library - Mon 9 Oct with fabulous authors @ lisajewelluk & @chrissiemanby @BernieCulkin Delighted to be calling for the first night back at #Sandbach Folk Dance club tonight 8.30-10.30 http://www. sandbachfolkdanceclub. danceorg.uk @Cheshire_CVU Turkish HGV driver spotted by @Bucko8828 using Mobile phone whilst driving on M6 S/B at Sandbach. £200 Roadside deposit paid. @NWmwaypolice

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Cycling plan

Town working group created A SPECIAL town cycling plan for Sandbach has been given the green light. Approval has been given by Sandbach Town Council for a working group to prepare the plan showing safe cycling routes and encouraging reisdents on to two wheels. The first meeting took place on September 14, to be followed by one on Tuesday October 10 at 7pm at the Sandbach Literary Institute. The working group will follow a methodology set by Cheshire East Council to fit in with the Cheshire East Cycling Strategy. The vision is ‘to enable more people to cycle safer, more often and with confidence for everyday and leisure journeys’. The main objective of the Sandbach plan should be to increase the attractiveness of cycling in the town with particular consideration given to addressing real and perceived safety issues. The working group may also wish to also consider what

complementary events, training and promotion is needed at a local level to support more cycling in the area. Sam Corcoran, the lead councillor on the working group, said: “Many people are deterred from cycling by fears over safety. “By establishing and promoting safe cycle routes we hope to increase the number of people cycling to work, to shops, for fun and exercise and to increase the number of children cycling to school. “The working group will determine which routes we would like to improve and make recommendation about how to improve those routes.” For further information or if you would like to join the working group please email sam. corcoran@sandbach.gov.uk

Setting the pace by Stewart Green

SANDBACH Striders staged their tenth annual 10k run in Sandbach this month. The adult race was accompanied by a 2k fun run for youngsters. The events attracted some 249 adult runners and 60 young competitors to the streets of Bradwall. The event has traditionally been held at Elworth Cricket Club but the group decided to move to Bradwall Village Hall for the start this year on Sunday September 10. The dry weather offered ideal conditions for the 10k run route, described by one runner as ‘a beautiful course with lovely views’. The 10k race was started by

Sandbach Mayor Martin Forster in Pillarbox Lane. The runners’ performances were monitored by high-tech timing devices with special chips attached to competitors who activated a timer by going over a rubber mat at the start and finish lines. First in the adult race was Carl Moulton who completed the run in 33 minutes 43 seconds, followed by Andrew Lamont and Stephen Bailey. The women’s race was won by Amy Clark with 40 minutes 10 seconds, followed by Victoria Summer and Emma Weston. Issac Leydon took 7 minutes 27 seconds to run the 2k children’s race earlier in the day, starting and finishing outside Bradwall Village Hall.

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Changing tune SANDBACH Voices has changed its name to the Sandbach Choral Society. Formed in Sandbach in 1947 Sandbach Voices was originally known as the Belmont Choir. The choir is making the latest change so people will have a better idea of what kind of music they perform. The change also coincides with the group’s 70th birthday, so they have included in this season’s concerts many works to reflect celebration. The season begins with a concert on Remembrance Sunday at 7.30pm in St Mary’s Church in Sandbach. Their Christmas concert on December 13 will also be held in St Mary’s and will be full of well known Christmas works including Fantasia on Christmas Carols by Ralph Vaughan Williams. The spring concert on March 25 will feature a performance of John Stainer’s Crucifixion and to round off the 70th year celebrations the summer concert will be a performance of John Brunning’s Amazing Day on June 30. The group, which has 60 members, rehearses every Tuesday evening at 7.30pm at Wheelock Methodist Church under the direction of conductor Christopher Cromar. The choir welcomes new members and anyone interested in joining should go along to a rehearsal or contact the secretary on 01270 766546.

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Dates For Your Diary Sat Sept 30 - Charity Market St Mary’s Church Hall, 10am12noon Sandbach Animal Rescure stages market and coffee morning in aid of cattery and animal care.

Tue Oct 3 - Sandbach History Society Sandbach Library, 7.45pm Featuring talk ‘King Canute and the Vikings’ by Val Bryant £3 entry. Call Aileen Thompson on 01270 760810. Mon Oct 9 - Coffee Morning Elworth Cricket Club, 10am12noon In aid of St Lukes Hospice Tickets £1.50. Call Judith on 01270 767902 Mon Oct 9 - Writer Evening Sandbach Library, 7pm - 8pm Best-selling author Lisa Jewell, whose latest book is Then She Was Gone Tickets £5 (booking essential) incuding wine Call 01270 375355 Tues Oct 10 - Movie Night Sandbach Town Hall, 7.30pm (6.30pm doors) Sandbach Community Cinema presents a film tbc. Tickets £5 from on 01270 600800

demonstration by Melanie Garbutt, RHS Florist of the Year in 2010 Fri Oct 20 - Race Night Sandbach Masonic Hall, The Commons, 7pm - 11pm St Luke’s Sandbach Support Group present race night and pie supper Tickets £10 from Jean Train on 01270 764640 Sun Oct 22 - Food, Gift and Craft Fair Sandbach Town Hall, 10am 4pm Free entry

Sun Oct 22 - Foden’s Youth Festival Sandbach School, 10am - 6pm The festival is the only event of its kind in the UK and will feature six bands each performing a 20 minute ‘concert set’ and will also feature a number of masterclasses and fringe events. The Festival will conclude with a Gala Concert featuring Foden’s and various instrumental groups made up of performers featured during the day Tickets £7 adults, £5 concessions from www.fodensband.com Tue Oct 24 - Live Music

Sat Oct 14 - Maker’s Market On the Cobbles, 9am - 3pm Stalls from Victoria Jackson on 07879 684184 Sun Oct 15 - Car Boot Sale Sandbach Town Hall/Market Hall, 9.30am - 1pm £10 per stall. 50p entry. Call Lynn on 07958 698159 Mon Oct 16 - Elworth Flower Club Bradwall Village Hall, 7.30pm ‘Floral Octoberfest’

Market Tavern, 8.45pm Sandbach Folk Club presents the Helsby Mountain String Band, promising an exciting mix of bluegrass, country, blues and folk standards

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Wed Oct 25 Live Concert St Mary’s Church, 7pm Sandbach Concert Series presents vocals and guitars from Jacqui Dankworth and Craig Ogden, with a spotlight on local young musicians and art exhibition Tickets £8.50, £3 children, from Demeter Wholefoods or Bramwells Opticians Fri to Sun Oct 27 to 29 - Art Exhibition and Sale Masonic Hall, The Common, 11am - 4pm Sandbach Art Club exhibition and sale Free entry. Visit www.sandbachartclub. com Sat Oct 28 - Charity Market St Mary’s Church Hall, 10am 12noon Sandbach Animal Rescue charity market and coffee morning 50pm entry. Call 07717 386505 Sun Oct 29 - Foden’s Solo, Duet and Quartet Contest Sandbach School, 9am - 6pm Now an annual event, the competition attracts entries from across Europe. Prize winners have been given opportunities to travel abroad, recieving scholarships in order to compete elsewhere around the world. For details and entry visit www. fodensband.co.uk Tue Nov 7 - Sandbach History Society Sandbach Library, 7.45pm Featuring talk ‘Crewe Hall at War’ by Graham Dodd £3 entry. Call Aileen Thompson on 01270 760810.


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High-flying Falcons SANDBACH United’s under 12s side, the Falcons, have been sponsored by builders Bovis Homes for the third year running. The team, which trains close to Bovis’ Saxon Lea site, visited the sales office to mark the deal. The company’s Carina Wilde said: “We’re thrilled to be sponsoring the Falcons for another year. “It’s a great local community club which many of our new local residents might like to get involved with, if they aren’t

already!” Sandbach United, based on Hind Heath Road, is run by trained and FA qualified volunteers and offers coaching to players from the age of four. The club has more than 40 teams, playing competitive football in the Mid-Cheshire Youth league, the Cheshire Girls’ League and the Cheshire League. Falcons boss Rich Greenwood said: “A huge thank you, Bovis Homes, for being so loyal to the Falcons, it really is appreciated.“

A SANDBACH resident suffered from smoke inhalation following an incident on August 31. Registered charity no. 1091608 Registered charity no. 1091608 Two fire engines from Sandbach and Crewe attended the scene at around 5.15pm at an address in Oakdene Court on Cecil Rigby Close. A Cheshire Fire Service spokesman said: “A fire alarm in a flat activated due to smoke from cooking. “There was no fire, but firefighters checked over one casualty who was suffering from smoke inhalation, but no ambulance was required at the incident.” More than half of accidental fires at home are started by cooking.

(cont. from front) issues come to light, taking steps to ensure that any matters of concern are fully and independently investigated and that any recommendations are shared openly and acted upon without delay. “It is important to note however, that these are legacy matters, not issues relating to the current leadership or management. “It is disappointing that Hands Off Our Sandbach do not acknowledge the considerable achievements of this council and the considerable efforts of both officers and elected members to ensure we can continue to deliver high performing services despite the current difficult circumstances.”

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Sandbach grind out season’s first win SANDBACH got their allimportant first league win of the season in a hard-fought encounter at Bradwall Road. The 29-26 win over Bridgnorth went down to the wire. Reduced to 14 men Sandbach had to hang on, but overall just about deserved the win based on a strong defensive effort and having the edge in the scrum. Sandbach had reshuffled their team following injuries from the previous week’s loss to Bournville. The home side welcomed back Tom Namgauds and Monty Weatherby to bolster the pack, while director of rugby Will Stockdale pulled his boots back on and former Cheshire star Mike Barlow made his Sandbach debut. All four proved to be key men in a committed performance, though play was punctuated

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by the referee’s whistle and influenced by the blustery conditions. The first 20 minutes was about penalties as both sides traded blows, with two Ben Elliot penalties for Sandbach against three for North’s Llewelyn Williams. Sandbach though stretched ahead from a try by scrum half Mark Bird, as the Sandbach eight pushed the visitors over the line and then a 20-metre driving maul culminated in skipper Dan Stubbs adding their second. Sandbach further extended their lead after the break with another Elliot penalty, but Bridgnorth responded in kind soon after, with yet another penalty for offside. Despite good work Sandbach were however conceding too many penalties and Bridgnorth

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kicked to the corner and after a series of drives, prop forward John forced his way over. North got within three points with another converted try as Williams made the most of a rare missed tackle. But Sandbach’s dogged

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resistance was just enough to hold on for the vital win. Sandbach will be pleased with the result and the spirit shown.

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The Saxon September 2017  

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