Monthly Archives: May 2013

Letter to elected representatives re dualling the A1

Alan Beith M.P.

House of Commons




Stephen Hughes M.E.P

Constituency Office

Room 38/4

County Hall




County Councillor Jeff Watson

County Hall


NE61 2EF


May 14th 2013



A1 north of Morpeth


I don’t suppose you saw it but I have recently written in a Journal column for the dualling of the A1 to be given the highest priority for investment in the whole North East region on the grounds of road safety, economic development and the poor image of Northumberland that the current wholly inadequate state of the road presents to a million people using it.


I also urged people to contact their elected representatives to urge them to set aside party politics and any local interests to work together on this fundamental strategic  issue in the interests of the North East.


You will have far more knowledge and experience of this issue than me. I write only to share my concern, ask you to let me know what you are currently doing about this matter and request that you keep me informed about any developments and representations you are making.



Yours sincerely,






Hilton Dawson

Dualling the A1 is the fundamental strategic priority for the North East

Last week I was in Lincolnshire to lead my brother in law’s funeral.
Jim was a good guy. While it was a very sad occasion it was also a wonderful opportunity for us to tell a quite epic tale.
Born in Ashington, then the ‘biggest mining village in the world’ Jim was apprenticed as an electrician at Linton Colliery straight from school. Assiduous application at night classes turned him into an engineer at Woodhorn and he was then part of the mass exodus of the 1960’s to the Nottinghamshire coalfield.
Utterly dedicated to the coal industry and to keeping the people who worked in it safe. Jim crossed picket lines by agreement during the Miners Strike to keep the pit in good order – for the community and for jobs. Hoping that this would last for many years to come.
Jim’s work of decades now lies disused and destroyed, sealed off thousands of feet underground. However, there is no doubt that his commitment to work – and to his community and colleagues – has had a beneficial impact on many thousands of lives. Continue reading

4 years to end the democratic deficit

Congratulations to everyone elected last Thursday.
In all the national coverage of the alleged surge of UKIP the issue completely overlooked was that of participation. Here in Northumberland we had one seat which managed more than 50% turnout. In many places less than 25% of those eligible took part.
Reflected as it was across the region and the country this represents a massive threat to our democracy and a huge missed opportunity to engage with key issues. Continue reading