Rainhill Village Life - Supported by your Labour Councillors

Friday, July 31, 2009


At the end of a fabulous day of fun, RAINHILL PARISH team came from the pack to take the MIKE DOYLE MEMORIAL TROPHY for 2009. The trophy was presented to the team by Mike's widow Julia.

The kids from the High School did us proud...!!! Many thanks must also go to the unsung hero who organised the winning team, LAURA SKULLY.

As always, a superb organisational feat by Steve Clarke and his willing team. For more photos go to the official website at: http://www.rainhillgala.co.uk



A cheque for £4150 was presented to Willowbrook hospice last Friday from the Rainhill Gala 09 Committee. Cllrs STEVE GLOVER and BARRIE GRUNEWALD attended the evening which was very enjoyable - a great atmosphere. It was very well attended and the live music provided really was superb.

Nichola Saunders, representing the Hospice, kindly wrote to the organisers, of which the Parish Council are members, thanking the team and the Rainhill residents in general for their support.

Nichola said, "The monies raised will go towards the new Outpatients Department Extension and re-designing the surrounding gardens".

"Good luck for Rainhill Gala 2010".


The Labour Government has recently announced new plans to electrify the Liverpool to Manchester rail line which has been met with general approval from people I have spoken to. "Long overdue" has been a typical response from rail users.

The journey from Liverpool to Manchester will be reduced to about 30/35 minutes duration. Speeds will increase from 75 mph to 90mph and the 4 coach trains will be air conditioned.

But will Rainhill residents gain anything? Will the high speed trains stop at our station? The current 2 coach trains are very overcrowded at peak times - will all services be 4 coach electrified?

There are lots of questions need answering. One little thought about question has arisen from our Railway and Heritage Society - WILL THE ELECTRIC OVERHEAD CABLES FIT UNDER THE SKEW BRIDGE..??



Rainhill residents have been warned by the local police that there has been a spate of car number plates thefts in the area.

Because of the difficulty of obtaining new plates through the usual outlets (you now have to carry vehicle documents), a growing number of vehicle plates are being stolen and consequently put onto vehicles that are used for various crime activities.

Plates that have been glued onto the car are easy pickings, and ones which are held on with two small nuts and bolts are similarly at risk. There are grubbit screws available which will foil the thief and the police recommend that these be fitted.

Please phone the police if your number plates have been stolen 0151 709 6010 (ask for St Helens) - you may well help to foil a illegal activity.

Thursday, July 30, 2009


Many local residents will remember the tragic death in February 2008 of an elderly woman who was attempting to cross the St Helens Linkway in Rainhill. On a bright dry wintery afternoon, 77 year old Kath Price from Cronton was enjoying a leisurely walk with her partner, Jim Gillespie from Rainhill. They were walking back towards Jim's home and had to cross the busy Linkway at Chapel Lane.

Kath was not too good on her feet, so both were aware of the time needed for them to cross safely. Tragically, on this day, Kath became another fatality. A vehicle collided with Kath and she had no chance. This duel carriageway is an extremely fast road and traffic can build up to a high speed at this crossing point which is about half a mile further on from Micklehead roundabout.

We can't do anything for Kath, but Jim wanted us to stop another similar accident. Finally we have the warning signs close to this dangerous crossing spot.


Phase 3 of the street lighting scheme for Warrington Road is due to start shortly. New high intensity lighting will be installed from School Lane (St Barts School) to the Junction 7 of the M62.

Carmel Drive and St James Road are due to receive footpath repairs and a weatherproof seal in the next 6 weeks.

Some carriageway resurfacing is alo to be undertaken shortly in Rainhill Road, Elmswood Avenue, Ellon Avenue, Ashley Close, Lowther Drive, Toftwood Avenue, Palmwood Avenue and Norcliffe Road.


Your three Labour councillors have received numerous complaints over the past 2/3 years about inconsiderate parking in Holt Lane, many times blocking in residents by parking across the driveways.

Because Holt Lane carriageway is the responsibility of Knowsley MBC we have had a prolonged fight to get them to act. Some residents thought they would never do anything, but we never gave up the pressure. Earlier this year, the promised resident only parking provision was put in place.

Remember the last harsh winter when the country nearly ran out of rock salt..!! We noticed that Holt lane did not get gritted. THIS IS A DISGRACE - it's a major arterial road and used by buses.

We have pressed Knowlsey MBC to include Holt Lane in their gritting rounds and they have promised to review our request.


Although the planned work was set to complete last weekend, no work has been started yet...!!!

One resident will remember complaining to Cllr DeAsha that their bin had been set on fire. After a home visit, Cllr DeAsha requested that an alleygate be installed here to stop further vandalism. That was about THREE YEARS AGO.

Even after all this time the proposed installation has been delayed. A further request for an alleygate in Longtons Lane, again over 3 years ago, still has not been actioned.

Rainhill appears to be bottom of the list with this Lib Dem / Tory council.


Your three councillors recently requested an urgent update on the station since work appeared to be progressing at a snail's pace. We have met with two representatives of Network Rail who gave a presentation on the work being carried out.

All work is being carried out with agreement from St Helens Council Conservation Officer. The station is a Grade II listed building and all work needs to be sympathetic to the original structure.

Picture 1 (below) illustrates the poor condition of the steps approaching the platform. These will be replaced with new steps made from the same material as it replaces.

The following picture illustrates the poor condition of the retaining wall to the right of the steps. This is also badly bowed so will need to be rebuilt, new stones (where needed) will be cut to shape and blended into the wall.

The canopy and the roof will be carefully removed, timbers inspected for rot and will be replaced where necessary on a like for like basis. Roof will be re-covered using the original slates and also reclaimed slates if necessary.

Existing boxed gutterings and ornate medillions will be taken down and again inspected and replaced again on a like for like basis. All the cast iron columns and gallows brackets will be thoroughly cleaned and repainted. Timber soffits and facias again inspected and replaced where necessary.

Because of the complexity of the refurbishment (specially made replacements, etc) and the ongoing discussions regarding protecting the Grade II listing, work will start in early 2010 and should be completed within 4-6 months.

We have requested that Network Rail display "Improvement Plans" on the station platform so that passengers and rail enthusiasts will be up to speed on the works.



These football fields have long suffered by poor drainage and were very difficult to play in poor weather.

Through the Ward Committee, we have negotiated a three-way partnership of funding to rectify the problem. With monies from St Helens Council and Rainhill Parish council, together with Ward Committee funding, the work should be completed in the near future.

We have also agreed to repaint the kiddie's play area and replace a burnt-out litter bin.


At the recent Neighbourhood Priority meeting, which councillors Steve Glover, Joe DeAsha and Barrie Grunewald all attended, residents complaints were noted and local policing feedback was provided:

A local youth, who has been responsible for lots of graffiti in the ward, has been arrested.

High visibility foot patrols in troublesome areas has reduced the numbers of calls by local residents.

Speed watch campaigns have continued in the ward.

A male, who drove a vehicle across Rainhill Cricket Ground was arrested and charged.

A scrambler bike and a quad bike have been seen in the Martin Close area and the police are keen to find out who the culprits are.

New Planters in Houghton street

The new planters in Houghton Street are now in full bloom. These were supplied via funding from the Ward Committee following residents suggestion to brighten up the Village Centre. We have also requested a new litter bin nearby - appropriately decorated to represent the local history of the 1829 Rainhill Trials

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