Parklands Focus Team

Pauline Allen, Robin Ashby & Christine Morrissey

About the Parklands Focus Team

Pauline Allen, Robin Ashby and Christine Morrissey are the elected councillors for Parklands Ward on Newcastle City Council. They work hard throughout the year to address local problems and issues and to ensure that the voices of Parklands' residents are heard in the Council Chamber.

Parklands Ward covers the north of Gosforth, either side of the Great North Road, from the Metro line to the A1, including North Gosforth Park, Melton Park, Brunton Park, Melbury and Warkworth Woods, Grange and Grange Park, Fencer Hill Park, Greystoke Park, Whitebridge Park, Halls Estate and Garden Village. 

The Focus Team has been serving this area since the mid-1970s, when John (now Lord) Shipley was first elected to the City Council. The Team has an unbroken record of listening to local people and keeping in touch through regular Focus newsletters ever since. In addition, the team now use this web page, eFocus and social media to keep local people informed about what is happening across the ward.

Pauline, Robin and Christine are also part of the 23 strong Liberal Democrats Official Opposition Group on Newcastle City Council, holding the current Labour administration to account and pressing for change to improve our area and the wider city. 

 

Picture of Pauline, Robin, Christine & Aiden
Pauline Allen, Robin Ashby, Christine Morrissey & Aidan King (parliamentary candidate for Newcastle North)

Parklands Annual Report

Parklands Focus Team - Service & Action across 2023 

We thought that the start of the New Year was a good point to look back at what the Parklands Focus Team have been doing over the past year. 

During 2023, Parklands' councillors, Pauline Allen, Robin Ashby & Christine Morrissey (pictured), organised two public meetings, each concentrating on an issue we knew was important to many residents. The Police attended a packed meeting back in March to listen to residents' concerns about local crime and anti-social behaviour issues. Then in October, another packed meeting discussed recycling with the Council Officers responsible for this service. Many residents commented that they had found both meetings very informative and helpful.  

Our Main Campaigns

Our long-running Greening Parklands campaign continued through the year, with a focus on new tree planting. We have been successful in being awarded a grant for new trees and have added £1,800 to this from our ward budget. We are working with residents and Council Officers to identify locations to plant the new trees, including some to replace diseased trees that needed to be felled in Garden Village and other locations.

Getting Around Parklands and the wider city has also been a major theme. This has included campaigns to retain bus services in the Great Park and Garden Village - lack of funding for public transport means that many routes are under threat. We have also taken up issues about Metro reliability and poor performance with Metro managers. Hopefully, the (delayed) introduction of new rolling stock will help during the coming year - albeit with some disruption as modifications are undertaken to allow the new trains to run. A successful campaign led to the Council making changes to the entrance to Heritage Gardens, making it safer for cars to turn into the estate. Pauline also got the Council to prune back bushes obstructing cycleways on Brunton Lane and Warkworth Woods.

When it comes to Improving Parklands, the Focus Team have continued to press both the Council and the Great Park Consortium to sort out the required repairs that would lead to the adoption of Melbury. We have also continued to press the Council to take action to repair/improve local play areas. Christine has dealt with many complaints from YHN tenants about damp, leaking roofs and broken fences. Working with fellow Liberal Democrat councillors across Gosforth, we are continuing to press the Council to make improvements to Gosforth High Street, based on effective consultation with local people and businesses.   

In the Council Chamber

On the Council, Pauline, Robin & Christine have worked closely with their Liberal Democrat colleagues to hold the Labour-led administration to account. This has included getting unanimous support for better consultation on the future of Gosforth High Street. The Council has agreed Lib Dem motions on increased support for heating for people with chronic illnesses and action to promote increased biodiversity across the city. Lib Dem councillors also challenged the Northumbria Police & Crime Commissioner on the high levels of unsolved crimes across Newcastle. Liberal Democrats' concerns about the deteriorating human rights in China and Hong Kong, led the Council to end a town twinning relationship with a city in China.

The Year in Numbers

Across 2023, the Parklands Focus Team delivered seven editions of Focus, to almost 5,500 letter boxes each time. Over 1,600 residents also received monthly eFocus updates on news and action across the ward. Pauline, Robin and Christine dealt with over 300 queries, problems and issues received from local residents - often involving multiple emails, letters and telephone calls for each issue. They held 18 street surgeries at various locations across Parklands as well as on Gosforth High Street.  

The Focus Team holding umbrellas at a rainy Street Surgery
Rain or Shine - The Parklands Focus Team work all year round
Pauline, Christine & Robin at Street Surgery at Broadway East

How to Contact the Focus Team

Do you have a problem or issue?

You can contact the Parklands Focus Team in the following ways:

Email us at: parklands@ncl-libdems.org.uk or just click on the button below

Call us by phone:

  • Councillor Pauline Allen - 0191 263 5947
  • Councillor Robin Ashby - 07947 114820
  • Councillor Christine Morrissey - 0191 243 1426 & 07726 594928

Meet us at our regular surgeries: 1st Saturday of the month 10 am - 12 noon at Street Stall on Gosforth High Street (outside Boots)

Follow us on Twitter or Facebook

Parklands Local News

Parklands eFocus - More News - More Quickly

Many residents tell us how much they appreciate receiving a copy of the local FOCUS newsletter through their letterbox - with local news and campaign updates from the Liberal Democrats.

If you would like to receive more frequent updates on issues and stories affecting your local neighbourhood then eFocus is for you - a regular email newsletter sent direct to your email inbox from the Parklands Focus Team. It is formatted to read easily on your computer, smart phone, tablet or other device.

If you would like to receive Parklands eFocus then sign up below.

Sign up to receive regular local eFocus newsletters

Would you like to receive regular updates on stories affecting your neighbourhood? We can send our local eFocus newsletter direct to your email inbox - so you can read it on your computer, smart phone or tablet.

We will keep you up to date by email.

The Liberal Democrats may use the information you provide, including your political opinions, to further our objectives and share it with our elected representatives. Any data we gather will be used in accordance with our privacy policy: libdems.org.uk/privacy. You can exercise your rights and withdraw your consent to future communications by contacting us: data.protection@libdems.org.uk or: DPO, Lib Dems, 1 Vincent Square, SW1P 2PN.

Parklands Liberal Democrats Focus Team - 50 Years of Service & Action

Tackling local issues and listening to residents across Parklands Ward
Pauline inspects the dirty water in the Ouseburn

Stop Polluting the Ouseburn

Our campaign to end sewage pollution in the Ouseburn

View
Police car 2

Police and Crime Survey

Have your say on local priorities for policing and community safety

View
Picture of wheelie bins

Climate Emergency Action

Local action is needed to tackle the Climate Emergency

View
Picture of bin wagon

Improve Local Services Now

Our campaign for better council services across Newcastle

View
Rain or shine - the work goes on
Christine "pops up" at Brunton Park
Litter picking in Broadway East
Christine litter picking with David Down
Pauline at the High Street air quality monitor
Pop up surgery at North Gosforth Park
A busy pop up surgery on Melbury
Saturday morning rain does not put off the Focus Team - with Pauline and Robin joined by new team member, Marley
Christine joins Pauline and Robin at the Brunton Park Pop Up Surgery at Brunton Park Shops after finishing at the High Street stall.
Rain or Shine - the Team back at Grange Shops

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