Manchester College’s A Level students are celebrating today following the highest number of students achieving A* and A grades in recent years.
A Wythenshawe-based “cowboy” airport parking firm has been told to pay more than £3,500 following a trading standards sting.
Mr Nabeel Khoury, age 45, of Greenwood Road, Manchester was personally fined £425 as sole director of PPS Manchester Limited and was ordered to pay £1,000 court costs and a victim of crime surcharge of £42 following a hearing at Manchester Magistrates Court.
The PPS Manchester Limited company was also fined £1,000 after being found guilty of engaging in a misleading action, and ordered to pay court costs of £1,000 along with a victims of crime surcharge of £100.
Mr Khoury and PPS Manchester claimed that car would be parked securely when in fact they were being parked on residential streets in Woodhouse Park, Wythenshawe – nearby to Manchester Airport – which is an offence under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations.
In 2016, Manchester City Council’s Trading Standards team fitted a tracking device to a vehicle and booked a three day airport parking service through the PPS Manchester website. The tracker showed the car had been parked on Greenwood Road in Woodhouse Park and clearly not in a secure car park as advertised.
The company’s website claimed that cars are kept on a concrete surface surrounded by fencing, patrolled 24 hours a day by security guards and under the watch of CCTV.
Returning the following day, trading standards officers found the car in the same position before picking up the vehicle from a PPS Manchester driver the next day.
Under interview, Mr Khoury claimed the cars were safe and secure as it was parked outside of his home address, and claimed the promise on the website referred to a period of time when the business was based at another location close to the airport.
He also claimed that if the booking had been for longer, the vehicle would have been moved to one of three secure car parks that he had exclusive use of.
The investigation is part of a multi-agency operation tasked with dealing with meet and greet parking operators in the Woodhouse Park area that sometime leave holiday maker’s vehicles residential streets for up to two weeks.
A dedicated enforcement team has now been set up to tackle the problem of cars being parked obstructively by rogue ‘meet-and-greet’ companies in residential areas during the school summer holidays.
Since the end of July, the enforcement team have received 42 calls from residents that have led 29 penalty charge notices being handed out, and nine vehicles removed from the streets of Wythenshawe.
Councillor Rabnawaz Akbar, Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “Cowboy meet and greet firms are making life a misery for residents in Wythenshawe and I’m pleased that the Courts have found it appropriate to impose a significant fine on this so-called company.
“I hope this sends a clear message to other illegal operators that deceiving customers will not be tolerated. We are doing everything we can to find you, investigate you and where possible, we will prosecute.
“Many residents are tricked into handing over their car keys to criminals for what seems like a good deal so we strongly advise anybody thinking of using an airport meet-and-greet scheme to research your chosen company carefully and look out for the certified “Buy with Confidence” mark.”
Residents are asked to call the Council on 0161 234 4199 if a vehicle is parked on double yellow lines, if a road crossing is blocked where there is a dropped kerb, if their driveway is completely blocked (where a dropped kerb has been provided by the Council or Wythenshawe Community Housing Group), or if a bus stop is blocked.
Where there is a confirmed case, the Council has powers to take enforcement action, which could include towing the vehicle away.
If a parked vehicle blocks a path or grass verge and makes it hard for pedestrians to pass, residents should contact Greater Manchester Police on 101.
England fans at Wythenshawe Town clubhouse were celebrating along with the rest of the country as Panama were hit for six.
It was an extraordinary display by the Three Lions with talisman, Harry Kane scoring a magnificent hatrick in England’s best ever World Cup performance.
But when Panama’s Baloy scored their team’s only goal of the game, there was one proud England fan who was praying his team would not increase their lead.
Steve McArthur had backed a winning score for England of 6-1 at odds of 80-1. So there was joy when Panama’s goal went in followed by an anxious 12 minutes till the final whistle.
And when the game finished, a delighted Steve said: “My only regret is only putting three quid on it.
“It was a great result. And it’s great that England can now relax for the Belgium game.”
England top Group G as they have fewer yellow cards than Belgium. If they draw the final game it will go down to disciplinary records to decide who finishes first – and if that is level lots will be drawn.
In case you’re wondering, Steve’s prediction for England’s last group game on Thursday is a 2-2 draw.
A multi-award winning zombie movie filmed in Wythenshawe has it’s online premier today.
Writer/Director Mat Johns and Producer Chris Lane’s short film ‘A Father’s Day’ was
selected for Short of the Week, a premiere destination for short films online. The film will be available from 3pm.
Produced by Leapling Films and funded by Creative England and BFI Network, the story follows George and Abi, an estranged father and daughter who are unexpectedly reunited with each other in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. The twist is, they are no longer the humans they once were but zombified versions of themselves. Read More…
A year after the Grenfell fire, resulting in the deaths of 72 people, sprinkler systems have still not been fitted to Wythenshawe’s high rise tower blocks.
Wythenshawe Community Housing Group, which runs the town’s 10 high rises said in December it would be installing sprinklers in the tallest block early this year.
The fitting of the sprinklers was approved by the Group’s board, but in a statement made this week it said sprinklers won’t be fitted before they have finished installing fire alarms, due to be completed in the autumn this year.
The WCHG statement in full:
Wythenshawe Community Housing Group remain committed to ensuring safety in high rise buildings and continue to work closely with GMFRS, MCC and other Registered Providers to ensure a consistent robust approach to fire safety in tower blocks. The Group owns and manages 10 high rise buildings in Wythenshawe and none contain ACM panels. Village 135 did have feature ACM detail to the projecting balconies, these panels were removed immediately and replaced with compliant solid metal cladding. We have worked closely with our residents in all of our high rise buildings which have had annual Fire Risk Assessments completed by an accredited consultant.
Since June 2017, we have repeated and reviewed in detail our approach to fire safety with our Fire Safety consultants to identify any further improvements that can be made to each block. Based on these findings further enhancements have been approved by the Group Board for the installation of sprinklers and full fire alarm systems to the traditional high rise buildings. We have prioritised fire alarm installations to meet FRA recommendations and a number of them have already being installed, with the remainder being completed by Autumn 2018. The fitting of sprinkler systems will follow the installation of the fire alarms.
Today marks the first anniversary of the fire in Grenfell Tower in North Kensington in which 72 people lost their lives. The inquiry into the disaster has heard how combustible material in external cladding fitted to the building was the primary cause of the fire’s spread.
And a report published by the London Assembly, taking evidence from fire safety experts recommended that all residential buildings should be fitted with sprinklers to save lives.
The report said sprinklers should be required by law in new care homes, sheltered housing and blocks of flats higher than six storeys, and the measures should be the first steps on a “road map” towards making sprinklers mandatory in all homes in England.
Solidarity events are taking place across the country this week to remember the victims of the Grenfell tragedy, including a candle-lit vigil in Salford at 6.30pm tonight, organised by the local Trades Union Council.