News in Brief: Invitation to minister

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Invitation to minister

SHEFFIELD Council leader Julie Dore has invited Communities Secretary Eric Pickles to visit the city.

She has written to him “to state quite clearly that whilst my administration will at all times stand up for Sheffield, my intention is to adopt a co-operative stance with Government and I would seek to have a strong working relationship.

“Despite the impact of Government funding changes on the economic and social wellbeing of Sheffield, my view is that the policy differences between us should not lead to an oppositional style of working.”

Before the May elections, Deputy Prime Minister and Sheffield Hallam MP Nick Clegg said Labour regaining control of Sheffield could lead to a return to the ‘dark days’ of confrontation as happened in the 1980s.

Friends’ epic ride

SHEFFIELD friends Ady Dench and Andy ‘Woody’ Turner have completed an 874-mile cycle ride from Land’s End to John O’Groats in just four days.

Ady, aged 42, of Ecclesall, who has his own decorating business, and Andy, aged 30, of Meersbrook, who is an IT administrator at Sheffield University, expect to raise £4,000 for Marie Curie Cancer Care and St Barnabas Hospice in Lincolnshire after setting an initial target of £2,000.

The members of Sheffield Triatholon Club and Sheffield Phoenix Cycling Club, backed by a support team, did the ride in memory of Ady’s father, John Dench, who died last December, only two months after a brain tumour was diagnosed.

Ady said: “It was an absolutely epic journey full of incredible highs and incredible lows. We can’t quite believe it is over but quite glad that it is!”

Bus fares rise

BUS operator Stagecoach Yorkshire is putting up some of its fares from Sunday, June 26.

For the first time since it was introduced five years ago, the Sheffield student single is going up by 10p to 60p. The Sheffield dayrider for buses only, priced at £3 since 2008, is increasing to £3.20 while the child version is going up 10p to £1.60.

The weekly Sheffield megarider will increase from £10 to £10.50, its first rise in three years. The company is bringing back the £3 dayrider ticket for routes 52, 120 and 123.

Managing director Paul Lynch said: “Insurance, utilities and higher import prices for engineering parts have all contributed towards our increased costs over the last 12 months.”

Bridge work delay

WORK to replace a weak bridge in Woodseats Road, off Abbeydale Road, looks like being delayed for another 18 months, despite the council now having £1.7m to do the work.

The bridge has been reduced to a single lane with traffic lights because it is too weak for heavy lorries.

The replacement is being scheduled for the quiet time of Christmas but, after obtaining the money for the scheme, it was too late for the council to serve notice to Network Rail in time to carry out the work at the end of this year. Now it is unlikely that the job will be done before Christmas 2012.

Jazz-themed garden

THE open garden summer season at Fanshawe Gate Hall in Holmesfield swings into life on Sunday from 11am to 5pm when the Blue Note Jazz Quartet will entertain visitors.

Garden owner and author Cynthia Ramsden and her husband John have been opening their cottage garden to the public for 15 years, raising money for charities supported by the National Gardens Scheme.

Tickets: £3 for adults, under-16s free.