Thursday, 22 July 2010

Man sexually assaulted on Lancaster Canal

Police are appealing for information after a man was sexually assaulted on the Lancaster Canal.

The 21-year-old male was on the canal tow path, between Aldcliffe and Galgate, between 10.00pm - 11.00pm on Tuesday night (20th July) when he was attacked.

The victim, who was initially wearing a distinctive long trench coat with a satchel and dark jeans, then ran away down the canal and was picked up by barge owners. The police were later alerted.

The victim is now being looked after by a team of specialist officers.

“Despite the heavy rain on that night, the canal tow path is often used by boat owners, dog walkers and joggers," notes Detective Chief Inspector Neil Esseen of Lancashire Police, "so it's possible that someone may have seen the victim either before or after the attack and we would urge them to get in touch with us.”

“Some of the victim’s personal property is missing and we would like to hear from anyone who has found any discarded items along the canal," he added. "We are also interested in any information from people who may have seen someone camping or living rough along the canal bank.”

• Anyone with information is asked to contact Lancaster Police on 01524 63333 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Civil Funeral for popular Morecambe City Councillor

Morecambe City Councillor John BarnesMorecambe City Councillor John Barnes, who passed away in the Royal Lancaster Infirmary on Saturday following a short illness, is to have a civic funeral.

Coun Barnes was elected to represent Morecambe's Harbour Ward on the city council in May 2007 and was the chairman of the Council's Older Persons’ Task Group, and the council's representative on a number of outside bodies including the Citizens Advice Bureaux, Lancaster District CVS and the West End Partnership.

The family have requested a civic funeral and councillors attending the funeral will therefore wear their ceremonial robes.

The funeral will take place at 11am on Monday 26th July at St Barnabas Church on Regent Road in Morecambe, followed by interment at Hale Carr Cemetery in Heysham.

Residents invited to Police open days

Local police are to hold a series of community open days to give local residents an insight into their work.

The open days will take place at Morrison’s car park in Morecambe on Tuesday 27th July from 10.00am – 3.00pm and Sainsbury’s car park, Lancaster, on Wednesday 28th July from 10.00am – 3.00pm.

Mini road shows will also be held at Booths in Garstang on 29th July; Poulton Park, Morecambe on 30th July; St Nicholas Arcade, Lancaster on 31st July; and the market place in Poulton on 1st August.

“We would encourage as many people as possible to come along to this event," says Superintendant Richard Spedding. “There will be the opportunity to meet local police officers, gain an insight into the range of departments within the police and find out more about the work that they do.”

Register to vote - it could win you £200

Lancaster City Council is enticing local people to register to vote with a cash prize draw for £200.

Each year the council is required by law to canvass every household in the district and produce a Register of Electors.

The forms for this year’s canvass will be distributed from the end of this month (30th July) and every household in the district should have received one by 10th August.

Anyone who has responded either by Freephone, internet or post by 3rd September 2010 will be entered into a free prize draw to win £200.

Anyone who has not responded can expect a knock on the door from one of the council’s team of canvassers.

“Registering to vote is vitally important," says Daphne Snelson, Lancaster City Council’s elections’ officer, explaining the aim of the campaign.

"As well as not being able to vote people who are not on the Register of Electors could find their credit rating is affected, meaning that they may be unable to get a bank account, a mortgage, a credit card or sign up for a mobile phone.

“By offering an incentive to people to return their forms on time we hope to ease the burden on our canvassing team and, ultimately, reduce the cost of the annual canvass.”

The service includes a 24 hour Freephone telephone service (0808 161 7649) or the internet registration service (

Those using the telephone or internet registration service should not return their form.

Both the telephone and internet systems also accommodate the ‘opt-out’ rules  allowing users to add or remove their names from the edited version of the register used by mailing companies, and to request postal vote applications.

• The register will be published on 1st December 2010. If a form is not delivered to your property by 10th August or you have any other questions, help is available from the council - telephone the helpline -  01524 582905.

Jewellery Thieves rob elderly shoppers

Local police are appealing for information after jewellery thieves targeted several pensioners out shopping.

On two separate occasions shoppers have been approached by two Asian women, who have then, without permission, placed a necklace around the shopper’s neck and asked them to buy it. When the shopper has refused, the necklace has been removed – along with the shopper’s own jewellery.

An 85-year-old woman had a £200 gold chain with clown pendant stolen in this manner while she waited for a bus in Galgate on 26th June. Earlier this month, on 7th July a 76-year-old man had a £600 gold chain taken from him while he was sat in his car outside a supermarket on Marine Road West, Morecambe.

Two other incidents, in Lancaster city centre, have also been mentioned to police, although nothing was stolen on these occasions.

“Both of these thefts have involved targeting the elderly for sentimental and valuable jewellery," notes PC Lindsay Appleyard of Lancaster Police. "We would like shoppers to be on their guard if they are approached by anyone claiming to be selling jewellery and if anyone has information about this, or has also been targeted in this way, we would ask them to contact police.”

• Anyone with information should contact police on 01524 63333 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Monday, 19 July 2010

Council tenants invited to shape future of housing service

Lancaster City Council is seeking suggestions from its tenants and leaseholders on how the services they currently receive can be developed in the future.

To gather as much feedback as possible, the council has organised a series of road show events which will take place over the next two weeks at various locations across the district.

Wednesday 21st July 2010
10am to 12pm
Branksome Estate, Morecambe - in front of 'Open all Hours' on the corner of Bleatarn/Windermere Avenue

Wednesday 21st July 2010
2pm to 4pm
Westgate Estate - in front of Westgate Primary School, Morecambe

Friday 23rd July 2010
10am to 12pm
Beck View Sheltered Housing Scheme (common room), Hala, Lancaster

Friday 23rd July 2010
2pm to 4pm – Carnforth estate, Gummers Howe Sheltered Housing Scheme (common room)

Monday 26th July 2010
10am to 12pm – Ridge estate - Community Centre, Patterdale Road, Lancaster

Monday 26th July 2010
2pm to 4pm – Ryelands estate - St Chad's Church Hall, Torrisholme, Lancaster

Tuesday 27th July 2010
2pm to 4pm – Marsh estate – Alder Grove Sheltered Housing Scheme (communal lounge)

Thursday 29th July 2010
10am to 12pm - Lancaster Market Hall, Lancaster

All city council tenants and leaseholders are welcome to come along.

A minibus will also be visiting the more rural areas to ensure everyone has their say. Tenants and leaseholders living in these areas will be notified individually of the dates and locations.