Thursday, 16 February 2017

Cross Street

New campaign is launched to give Cross Street a lift

Published date: 15 February 2017 | 
Published by: Emily Davies 
Read more articles by Emily Davies Email reporter

A campaign has been launched to breathe new life into an Oswestry town-centre street following last week’s Advertizer front page.
The Cross Street Campaign is being led by Barry Edwards and will be following the progress made to the street.
It comes after the Advertizer reported on a pledge made by Shropshire Council leader Councillor Malcolm Pate to bring action against the owners of the decaying shops that litter the street scene.
Mr Edwards said Oswestry’s town centre is important to the economy and the lifestyle of residents and visitors.
He continued: “I want to work closely with the estate agents, owners and the council to hopefully revitalise and bring some interest into the empty shops.
“There will also be a sort of public forum for ideas on the Facebook page.”
Mr Edwards also said he was keen to find out whether there is a ‘strategic plan’ in place to revitalise Cross Street.
He said: “I’m not attacking the council by any means, but something needs to be in place to detail the developments and take things forward.”
The Cross Street Campaign has received the support of more than 100 people in the past few days and Mr Edwards said he would welcome any ideas or suggestions to help improve the street scene in the short and long-term.
Some of the ideas already put forward include reducing business rates and rents, encouraging big-name brands back into the town, and also again pursuing the use of artwork in vacant shop windows as Footfall has done previously.
Mr Edwards added: “So far I’ve been in contact with the estate agents asking about how many viewings the properties have had and so on – in fact, the former card shop is now under offer – but then I’m also looking to draw up a register of the owners and the business rates.
“I hope to work with the town council to begin with and see what happens from there.”
To find out more visit and search ‘Cross Street Campaign’.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Oswestry Defends Our NHS!

Oswestry Defends Our NHS group

Community activists have come together to form a new group in Oswestry to fight cuts to NHS services. Oswestry Defend our NHS is affiliated to the highly successful Shropshire campaign and is co-chaired by Neil Graham from St Martins and Barry Edwards from Oswestry. Meetings are held on the first Tuesday of each month in the Bailey Head at 7.30pm.

The group has published a leaflet and will be campaigning on a range of issue including:

  • Campaign to keep A+E centres at both Shrewsbury and Telford.
  • Oppose privatisation of health care services.
  • End the disastrous “Future Fit” which has seen over £3M spent on consultants rather than patient care.
  • Ensure we maintain a full maternity service at the Orthopaedic hospital in Gobowen.
  • Ensure that the financial viability of the Orthopaedic hospital is not undermined by changes to tariff payments for hip and other operations.
  • Ensure that the GP provision in Oswestry is sufficient to meet the needs of a growing population.
  • Ask candidates for the Shropshire Unitary    Council elections in May to pledge their support to the NHS.
Commenting on the recent announcement that the proposals for A+E services are to be considered by yet another independent review the Co-Chairs of Oswestry Defend Our NHS said "The people of Oswestry will be appalled to here that even further public money is to be wasted on reviews and consultations. Future Fit has already wasted over £3M that could, and should, have been spent on patient care. It's time to call an end to it and to end the divisive proposals that have pitted the residents of Shropshire against Telford. We don't need to choose which A+E survives we need to keep them both."

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Happy New Year

Hello and Happy New Year!
Over the past year I have been campaigning on some of the local issues that face our town and people. For those who don’t know me I grew up in Oswestry and went to University in Birmingham and, after several years working as a musician, I returned to my home town and now run the Hermon Chapel Arts Centre on Chapel St.

I am passionate about Oswestry and its future and how we can help prevent the demise of our thriving market town.

To view my Winter 2016/17 newsletter, click HERE