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This is the 90th edition of e-Focus, bringing you the latest news from the Low Fell Focus Team. It includes:

  • Time is running out for postal voters - and Daniel and the Focus Team need your support
  • Overhanging branches
  • St. Helen’s Church awarded grant
  • Birtley to Coal House road works brought forward
  • Highest Council Tax for Metropolitan Councils: Don’t just take our word for it
  • New bin on Durham Road
  • Charging point at Cross Keys Lane car park needs fixing
We hope you are finding these updates useful. Let us know if there's anything you would like to see included in our next edition.

Also, a big welcome if you are getting e-Focus for the first time having signed up to our website, or opted into receiving e-Focus via one of our petitions, a survey etc. 

We send these e-newsletters to over 1,000 local people, but there are many more who are not on our mailing list. Please feel free to forward this email on to friends and neighbours, who can add themselves to the list at  

Please remember that we are here to help you. Our details, including our home phone numbers, can be found here
Best wishes,
Ron Beadle, Susan Craig, and Daniel Duggan
Councillors, Low Fell Lib Dem Focus Team

P.S. If you are on Facebook, and would like to follow us, our page is here
Time is running out for postal voters - and Daniel and the Focus Team need your support
If you a postal voter and have not yet voted, time is running out to vote in the local elections. Please make sure you get it into the post to arrive at the Council on polling day, Thursday 6th May. You can also take your completed postal vote to your local polling station on Thursday. (Polls close at 10pm).

In Low Fell it is between Daniel and the Focus Team and Labour - last time the Conservatives came fourth place with only 6% of the vote and won't win here, but voting for them risks letting Labour win.

Daniel and the Focus Team work hard all year round, get things done for Low Fell, and hold the Labour bosses at the Council to account. The last thing Gateshead needs is yet another Labour Councillor. 
If you would like to show your support for Daniel and the Focus Team by displaying a window poster let Daniel know by calling 0191 4874613 or emailing or contact Daniel if you would like to discuss anything.
Low Fell Councillor Daniel Duggan has a real record of action in Low Fell 
Overhanging branches
It is that time of year again as the leaves grow on the trees.  Although this is a lovely part of spring, residents who live near trees with overhanging branches can have problems.
The Council can require people whose property includes trees and hedges to have these cut back when they are proving a nuisance and one such case was resolved last week after Ron got in touch following a request from residents.  When the problem is trees on the street, the Council can cut these back.

So if you are having a problem, do let the Focus Team know.
St Helen's Church awarded grant
The Church on Belle Vue Bank has recently won a grant from the National Lottery to open up the Church Yard and St Helen's is asking for ideas that would benefit the community. If you are on facebook they can be contacted here and their website is here
St Helen's Church
Birtley to Coal House road works brought forward
The Highways England work to improve the A1 from Birtley to the Coal House roundabout (junctions 65 to 67) has been brought forward and is now due to begin from early May.  This is bound to cause temporary disruption over the summer so drivers may have to revise their journey time.  Further details can be found on the dedicated website here 
Highest Council Tax for Metropolitan Councils: Don’t just take our word for it
Labour have started to question whether Gateshead has the highest level of Council Tax of any Metropolitan Borough in England - over £200 higher than neighbouring South Shields for a Band D property for example. So here is the site giving the official figures (Table 7 ((Mets) is the one you need). 

Daniel and other Lib Dem Councillors voted against Labour's recent 4.99% Council Tax hike, but Labour Councillors voted for it.
Labour run Gateshead Council charges the highest Council Tax of any Metropolitan Council in England - and have over £40 million in the bank!
New bin on Durham Road
After being contacted by residents, we asked the Council to site a new bin and this has now appeared on Durham Road, near the bus stop close to Musgrave House. 

Daniel said "We need more, and bigger, bins in suitable locations in Low Fell to tackle the litter problem. We also need the Council to empty them more often so we don't see overflowing litter. This looks bad, smells, and attracts vermin (see second photo below)".  
Charging point at Cross Keys Lane car park needs fixing
As residents may know one of the charging points at Cross Keys Lane for electric vehicles is not working. The Council say they are in the process of getting an engineer to fix this. We will continue to monitor this.
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