Councillor Susan Hobson’s latest update
Whether it’s litter-picking in the neighbourhoods I serve, securing investment for Derbyshire community groups, enjoying local art and music, or tackling important issues like keeping our roads safe – it’s been a busy but rewarding time of late.
Firstly, I’ve handed out local government grants to some highly deserving community groups recently. Pilsley Beavers benefitted from new art equipment; Rowsley Parish Council had money towards fencing repairs and a new gate; Baslow WI got funding for a Jubilee picnic table and Darley Dale Scouts received cash to buy uniforms to loan out to children. These are just a few examples.
Roads and highways issues have been keeping me busy, too. Whether it’s responding to reports of blocked drains or visiting the sites of major works like Darley Bridge; dealing with potholes or addressing the landslides at Oker, Beeley and Stanton Lees — there’s always plenty to be getting on with.
I am trying to support local communities, such as Froggatt, to get a speed indicator device system. The signs, activated by an approaching vehicle, display the vehicle’s speed and a reminder message to either slow down or a smiley face graphic for keeping within the limit. Research shows that measures like this can have a profound effect on speeding vehicles.
Towards the end of last year, I arranged for the Environment Agency to visit Baslow to look at the concerns of residents regarding flooding. As a result, there are further talks regarding the ownership of the weir.
I’ve also continued to attend the Derbyshire Dales Community Safety Partnership, which looks at issues such as domestic violence and antisocial behaviour. Bringing such important issues to public attention is so important in my role.
There’s been plenty of good times lately, too. Before Christmas, I had a terrific time celebrating with the Senior Citizens at South Darley and joining Christmas services at Baslow, Beeley and Edensor.
My calendar has been filled with some sublime music and culture recently. I caught Swervy World, an eclectic jazz and cabaret band, at Live & Local at Baslow. I was also lucky enough to watch a spellbinding performance by rising folk stars Harbottle & Jonas at Holloway Village Hall. Seeing DaleDiva perform at “Warm Wednesdays” at The Whitworth in Darley Dale was a great experience. “The Great Biggish Bake Off“ panto in Baslow was a brilliant family night.
Another highlight was visiting Level, a contemporary arts centre in Rowsley. This wonderful attraction brings together community-made artwork, through digital participation, to visitors of all ages. If you haven’t visited yet, I highly recommend it.
As part of my County Council role, I’ve been to Buxton Museum, which has some great permanent collections as well as impressive temporary art exhibitions. Again, get along for a fulfilling afternoon.
Of course, my meeting schedule is packed. Most nights I’m engaged with parish and town council meetings, as well as meetings with both Derbyshire Dales District Council and Derbyshire County Council. It keeps me busy but speaking up for the people I serve is the reason I do this in the first place.
And finally, you might spot me out in all weathers with a pink bin bag picking litter from the roadside and public footpaths. Our area is so beautiful, and it breaks my heart to see it fouled with rubbish. Plus, it gets me out into the fresh air for some exercise. Win-win! If you see me out and about, do say ”hi”. I will be at the Chatsworth Litter Pick in March.