The August news sheet from Joan Davis, Chairman of Community Voice, states that Nick Carver, Chief Executive of East & North Herts Hospitals NHS Trust, has given an assurance that the Cancer Centre will stay at Mount Vernon for the foreseeable future, probably on a 'hub and spoke' basis, with major diagnostic and treatment facilities based at Mount Vernon and routine treatment provided also at satellite centres.

Work is underway to upgrade the traffic lights at the junction with Rickmansworth Road, which is being widened to allow a left turning lane into Ducks Hill Road. The central traffic islands are being relocated to accommodate the new lane layout, and the traffic signals themselves are being upgraded. The scheme is being funded by Transport for London, and it is hoped that it will improve traffic flows, particularly during peak times.

In order to minimise disruption, work will be undertaken in several separate stages.

London Borough of Hillingdon expects that most of it will not cause too many problems as existing traffic signals will manage the site. All work will be conducted in off-peak times to minimise disruption, and it is hoped the worst of it will be completed before the schools go back in September. The carriageway widening stage is almost finished, and the relocation of the traffic islands will be commenced next week. A lot of the work after that will take place on the footway.

If progress is good, it is hoped that the scheme may be finished by the beginning of October, as long as there are no unforeseen problems.

After a long campaign, it finally looks as though the 40mph speed limit from the county boundary to Northwood Golf Course may be reduced to 30mph. Thanks to NRA Committee member, Tony Ellis’s efforts, it now has the backing of LBH and the Metropolitan Police.

There is to be a survey of the road and a design scheme in order for the implementation of the new limit to be effective. The survey will need to be undertaken in term time in order to observe traffic at Holy Trinity School and to determine the effects of the new road layout at Ducks Hill Road. It is therefore hoped that the survey will be completed by early November. LBH have obtained funds from TfL to implement the recommendations and the length of time to complete the scheme will depend on the extent of the recommendations. We will bring residents more information when we have it.

From time to time, Northwood residents are subjected to more aircraft noise than usual. The basic rules operated by BAA Heathrow are as follows.

Normally there are no scheduled departures from Heathrow between 11.30pm and 6.00am. However, there is no ban on night flights and operational needs such as delays caused by weather and technical problems may necessitate planes taking off after 11.30pm. Planes taking off only pass over Northwood when the westerly runway is being used and should be at an altitude of at least 4000 feet. Noise levels will depend on the age and make of the aircraft, loading and atmospheric conditions (eg an elderly, fully loaded Boeing 747 jumbo will make far more noise in still conditions than a modern A320 Airbus on a windy day). Fortunately, Northwood is not on the main take-off flight path. On the other hand, Northwood is on a main landing path when the easterly runway is being used. Planes start arriving around 5.00am and noise can be an irritant when the waether is warm and still.

Should you feel that a particular aircraft or series of aircraft have made too much noise, you can complain to BAA giving the time of the incident and the direction of aircraft travel. Regretfully, the NRA cannot take up individual complaints. The BAA contacts are email - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , telephone 0800 344 844, postal address BAA Operations Communications. Heathrow Point West, 234 Bath Road, Middx, UB3 5AP. There is also a website - www.heathrowairport.com/noise.

The CTRT Appeal was launched in 2006 by the Cancer Treatment and Research Trust. The aim at that time was to raise £1 million to provide a new chemotherapy treatment and research unit at the Mount Vernon Cancer Centre.

The 25 cancer consultants at Mount Vernon are all dedicated to finding new life-saving treatments for most types of cancer. The Centre has a national and international reputation for its ground-breaking research work but some of the facilities have not kept pace with the quality of services provided.

Things are now changing fast and there has been considerable investment over the past few years to provide a state-of-the-art radiotherapy building and a new treatment unit for prostate cancer.

But funding for updated chemotherapy treatment and research facilities was not available and the CTRT decided to raise the money needed. A fundraising committee – mostly cancer patients – was set up and the good news is that to date they have raised more than £1.3m. However, the goal posts have moved and an improved design and specification for the new unit means the target is now £1.5m. The battle is on to find the remaining £200,000 over the next few months to enable the new unit to open in mid-2009.

Patients will benefit from a restful environment in which to receive their chemotherapy and there will be first-rate facilities and equipment to enable more people to participate in the trials of new treatments which can offer fresh hope to many cancer patients.

Brian Abbott, who has been co-ordinating the appeal committee, is a great supporter of Mount Vernon. He said: “I had cancer six years ago and was absolutely terrified until I arrived at Mount Vernon where I found a relaxed and reassuring atmosphere. Because the consultants are at the leading edge of research there is a real belief that many patients can be cured – and I was one of them. The two million people living in the catchment area served by Mount Vernon – Hertfordshire, north-west London, and parts of Beds, Bucks and Berks – are fortunate to have one of the UK’s leading cancer centres on their doorstep. It really is a very special place”.

Donations should be sent to Brian Abbott, The Clock Tower, Mount Vernon Cancer Centre, Northwood, HA6 3RN.

For more information – or to volunteer as a fundraiser – email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone 07758 739185