David Burbage’s weblog

Politics in the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

  • About David Burbage

    David Burbage MBE was Leader of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Council from 2007-2016. This blog : Promoted by Geoff Hill on behalf of David Burbage and all other Windsor and Maidenhead Conservative candidates, all of 2 Castle End Farm, Ruscombe, Berkshire RG10 9XQ
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Archive for the ‘Maidenhead’ Category

Maidenhead Town Council in 1960

Posted by davidburbage on July 8, 2015

In charge of public health (which means trusting the food that is being sold!), housing, libraries, but not able to put up traffic lights without permission from the DfT ! Also great scenes from the town centre, including the old town hall and library.

Where is the bus at 3:58 ?

Where is Hill St? Is that Castle Hill ?

At 4:55 “We must increase the staff” !

At 9:55 “Council members are not permitted to vote on matters connected with their private business”. Oh how sensible and simple the rules were then. . . .

Mention of Standle Road and Parsons Lane – neither of which I am familiar with. Or the Meadow Lane Council Housing Estate.

And to finalise, the construction of the new Town Hall.

See it at BFI : http://player.bfi.org.uk/film/watch-i-am-a-mayor-1961/






Posted in General, Maidenhead | Leave a Comment »

Local election success in 2015

Posted by davidburbage on May 9, 2015


What a great result – 54 out of 57 seats and returning all of our sitting councillors who were re-standing, with the fantastic addition of new blood – and in new seats!

In Maidenhead we distributed our “A3” literature everywhere, featuring photographs and action shots of councillors working in their wards, and with candidates where appropriate. We also had professional calling cards, supporting “A4” literature in target wards, and plenty of polling day material.

Belmont, Boyn Hill and Furze Platt are all safely Conservative after being battleground seats for many years. Many hours of campaigning delivered us success there. In Bray, Cookham, Hurley, Cox Green, Riverside and Oldfield we consolidated our majorities – and saw no sustained opposition (but a bit of Cookham Parish action).

Which leaves Pinkneys Green. We saw early on that the LibDems had circled their wagons around their existing ward seats – importing Clive Baskerville to stand, despite his track record in Belmont. The campaign was hard fought and we continued to get our voters out until way past 9pm in the evening. However, sitting councillor Simon Werner topped the poll a few ahead of Charles Hollingsworth, who won last time, and fellow Conservative Marius Gilmore who had also walked the streets near continuously during the campaign was rewarded with third place. A tie for fourth place but neither Bond, Baskerville or Shez Courtenay-Smith were elected. A great pity for Shez who had worked so hard and dedicatedly throughout since being selected to stand. I hope we will be able to work together in the future.

In Windsor, such a challenge! 13 wards, all different, independent challenges of all sorts, and a mix of defectors, new candidates, folks standing down and changes were afoot!

Both Eton seats were highly contested. Windsor resident (and former Deputy Leader of East Herts District) Malcolm Alexander just pipped Miss Fussey at the post by 43 in Eton and Castle; George Fussey had previously won by just 22 on a lower turnout, so on a straight fight, it was a tight finish.

In Eton Wick our enthusiastic Samantha Rayner worked so hard to spread the word and was returned with just over 50% of the vote.

Datchet, Sunningdale, Ascot and Cheapside were all safe seats consolidated. Sunninghill had had an interesting contest – but returned a fully blue team. Horton and Wraysbury saw a very solid victory for our sitting Lenton and Rayner team.

In Windsor itself, the WWRA sponsored “independent” expansion programme collapsed very spectacularly. [I wonder if we’ll ever see the original WWRA photo? It’s one for the album]

In their heartland of Clewer North, a total of 5 independents stood and showed that when the Conservatives fight hard, and together, anything is possible. Our 2014 by-election candidate John Collins, with Nicola Pryer and Hashim Bhatti worked tirelessly to deliver a far better result than we could have hoped for and will be able to represent the interests of the local residents extremely effectively.

Park saw 10 candidates vie for 2 seats – and with 57% of the vote Conservative, it was hard for anyone else to make an impact.

Our Castle Without team was all new and returned a clean sweep with almost 58% of the vote – here, the opposition was limited but vocal but didn’t try anywhere near as hard as our team.

In Clewer East new candidate John Bowden topped the poll, joining Dee Quick and again, over half the vote saw the opposition votes split.

Clewer South was a late declaration and our local team of Mike Airey and Ed Wilson triumphed.

Old Windsor, however, proved a bridge too far. Watch out Malcolm and Lynne, we’re coming to get you!

Another campaign over, but now the work begins on delivering our 2015 manifesto, and keeping all our pledges – and continuing to run the Royal Borough in the interests of residents, who do, after all, pay for the local public services.


Posted in Conservative success, Council, Maidenhead, Windsor | Leave a Comment »

Delivering our 2011 Manifesto (Maidenhead)

Posted by davidburbage on April 8, 2015


One of the biggest challenges we faced coming into power in 2007 was the long history of inactivity in Maidenhead town centre. There had been political disagreements and general uncertainty about how to make progress. We changed all that over the last 8 years and real progress is visible and very active in the town.

Work tirelessly to deliver regeneration of Maidenhead Town Centre delivering quality shops for residents and visitors

Regeneration is happening all around! A better shopping offer is supported as more people live and work in the town centre following regeneration activity and “Enjoy Maidenhead” promotions. We’re also conscious of changing shopping habits as the internet continue to impact conventional retailers.

Review the roads system to improve access and footfall into the town centre

Proposals to “turn left” from the A4 into Waitrose, the removal of unnecessary traffic lights and a now wider review has taken place

Support more regular markets and extra events on the High Street

Loads of events and markets continue in the town centre.

Improve and extend town centre parking, and bring in more free parking offers

New on-street parking spaces have been provided, and free residents parking permits have been agreed.

Keep the Town Hall and continue the work of the cross party Partnership for the Rejuvenation of Maidenhead (PRoM)

Town Hall kept; PRoM widely engaged and visible, on a cross party basis

Bring hanging baskets all year round to Maidenhead Town Centre


Bring in Pay on Exit Parking at Nicholson’s car park


Put no traffic lights on Maidenhead’s A4 roundabouts

None done!

Keep onstreet parking free


Continue to support the Maidenhead Waterways Restoration scheme

The Borough continues in close collaboration with the MWRG to support delivery of the scheme. More work and effort is needed all round, but progress is visible and positive.



Posted in Conservative success, Council, Maidenhead, Manifesto 2011 | Leave a Comment »

Winning in Cox Green

Posted by davidburbage on December 14, 2014


Cllr Ross McWilliams

Ross McWilliams (pictured) won the Cox Green by-election on Thursday 11th December by a good margin. The result was very convincing – we polled over half the votes in a four way contest.

Names of Candidates Description Votes Recorded (E): Elected
Carter, Lance Graham UK Independence Party (UKIP) 278
Horner, Robert Labour Party Candidate 124
Jones, Gareth Peter Liberal Democrats 315
McWilliams, Ross Charles Conservative Party 738 E
Spoilt papers 2

We chose not to use this head shot because I said it looked a bit “cheeky” but given his win, I thought it would be worth showing now!

The LibDems tried really hard, put out surveys and at two pieces of literature, tried to make campaign issues of the Highfield Lane bridge, the leisure centres and other points but Ross was across all of these. Having been born and brought up in Cox Green, his local knowledge and the number of people who knew him really helped ensure his success, and will make representing the community much easier.

Well done Ross!



Posted in Conservative success, Council, Maidenhead | Leave a Comment »

Residents to be over £1000 better off under Tories with latest council tax cut

Posted by davidburbage on January 21, 2014

For the fifth year running, the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead Conservatives are proposing to cut council tax for residents, this year by a further 2%.

The latest cut means that the average household will be over £1000 better off than if the Liberal Democrats still controlled the council.

Cllr Simon Dudley (Con, Maidenhead Riverside), Lead Member for Finance, said: “When the Liberal Democrats were last in control, council tax rose by a staggering 24.3%. This is in stark contrast to the 25.6% real terms cut delivered by the Conservatives over the last five years – proving that only the Conservatives can be trusted to be responsible with residents’ money.”

The average Band D rate for unitary authorities in England last year was £1486 making RBWM residents over a third better off than residents living in other unitary councils across the country.

Cllr David Burbage MBE (Con, Bray), Leader of the Council, said: “We know that people are still worried about the cost of living and rising bills. By cutting council tax again we can help to ease a bit of their tax burden. Residents should feel confident that we will continue to deliver the first-rate services our residents quite rightly expect.”

This fifth consecutive cut will bring council tax back to the level it was 10 years ago and place RBWM as the lead authority for the most years of consecutive council tax cuts.

Rt. Hon Eric Pickles MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, said: “My congratulations go to the councillors and officers at the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead for cutting council tax for five years in a row. Local households will welcome a 2% reduction in their council tax bills. The Royal Borough has once again demonstrated that by repeatedly cutting waste and combating inefficiency, it is possible to keep on delivering improved frontline services at the same time as cutting council tax. This shows how Conservative councils do more for less”

Following this week’s budget announcement that RBWM Conservatives have proposed to cut council tax for a fifth consecutive year, Prime Minister David Cameron was quick to congratulate the Conservative run council on twitter.

In addition to David Cameron’s comments, Windsor MP Adam Afriyie also applauded the Conservative Group’s efforts to produce yet another budget that enables a further cut to council tax without any reduction in front line services.

Home Secretary and MP for Maidenhead Theresa May also welcomed the news for local residents saying:

“I am delighted that the council has once again been able to announce a significant cut in Council Tax. This is excellent news for people in Maidenhead and the Royal Borough. This Conservative council is proving that you can get more for less by working with local residents to develop more efficient services.”

Posted in Conservative success, Council, General, Libdem Failings, Maidenhead, Tax, Windsor | Leave a Comment »

2014 New Year’s Honours

Posted by davidburbage on December 31, 2013

Very honoured to be awarded an MBE in the 2014 New Year’s Honours – for services to Local Government!

Nice to see Paul Carter in Kent and Paul Swaddle in Wokingham also getting gongs, and Emma Pidding too.

Worthy winners all…..

Posted in Conservative success, Council, Maidenhead, Windsor | Leave a Comment »

Maidenhead Food Bank

Posted by davidburbage on January 1, 2013

maidenhead-foodbank Visited Maidenhead’s Food Bank just before Christmas – they were stocked full and yet need more space – we’re doing what we can to locate some better premises.

It does go to show that the welfare state isn’t working terribly well when there’s a rising need, as there has been for the last few years, for direct food charity from local people to those who can’t afford to properly feed themselves and their families – and this in a pretty well-off part of the country.

2013 can be a year of the reality check, when the important things are recognised and the less important are put in their proper place.


Posted in Big Society, General, Maidenhead | Leave a Comment »

Manhole Cover Fire

Posted by davidburbage on April 19, 2012

I have never seen anything like this. This is from near the River Thames in Maidenhead – a YouTube video is here ; watch until the end!

Posted in Maidenhead | Leave a Comment »

Berkshire Fire Authority helps Windsor retain 24/7 service with a full sized fire engine

Posted by davidburbage on February 16, 2012

At the meeting of the Berkshire Fire Authority last night, the Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP) was approved. It contained a good deal of standard stuff around the fire service, but the important thing for the Borough is the service provision in Windsor. We now have a full sized pump on the run, 24/7, and it will be crewed pretty much all of the time by at least 4 crew. This is some way forward from the position 5 years ago when the Fire Authority wanted to close Windsor altogether.

In Maidenhead today at 1.41am our local fire service was called into action at sheltered accomodation in Brill House, Cox Green – which had a night time fire. Fortunately, automatic equipment alerted the problem before it spread too far and residents were evacuated without injury. The property is a bit damaged, I understand.

Posted in General, Maidenhead, Windsor | Leave a Comment »

Bringing Listed Rocks to Life

Posted by davidburbage on January 3, 2012

 After many years of a dull and moss encrusted rock formation sitting outside the Listed Building of Maidenhead Library, we’ve upgraded the fountain (that didn’t work) into a fountain (that does work) and made the entrance to the library a more attractive proposition.

Add to that the monolith (signpost / waymarking) which is itself part of the improvements being made throughout Maidenhead Town Centre, and St Ives Road is definitely looking smarter than previously.

Take a look when you’re next in town!

Posted in Conservative success, Council, Maidenhead | Leave a Comment »