Problems with the Electrics

Featured

I’ve been absent from my blog for a week thanks to problems with my electrics. But a big shout out to a Horsham electrician who happened to be visiting friends in our street and came to the rescue. He’s had to rewire part of the house but done a splendid job.

So thankfully I can get back to my “anarchist” blog and what’s happening in Bournemouth.

I saw a Bournemouth Echo headline that says Dorset Tea producers move to Newcastle. Well, as you can imagine, I was boiling over! What! Make our beloved Dorset Tea in the North East?

Then I read the rest of the article…..  Turns out they are moving some of their production to Newcastle, and lots of jobs are being lost, which is a bad thing for the area. But they are continuing to produce Dorset Tea in Dorset!  So I should think. Blood pressure back to normal …

The big news of the day is David Cameron’s so-called reform deal with the EU. Our Dorset MP has said it’s not good enough – and he’s a Conservative.

Jury’s still out as far as I’m concerned but my first reaction is to agree with Chris Chope. Haven’t studied it yet, but seems to me DC hasn’t got anything much – let alone major renegotiations!  Well we’ll find out when the referendum takes place, but I suspect most of the UK will vote to stay in – not least because we have so many immigrants who will never want to get out.

Blood pressure’s up again – I need to have a nice cup of Dorset Tea and a quiet nap.

 

More EU Rantings

I only just got started the other day about some of the disadvantages of the EU to us in the UK. And it got me thinking.

I was reading about another local company – Reidsteel in Christchurch.  They have a completely different view of the EU and its effect on their business.  They want us to leave because they are hampered by red tape – brought about by Brussels.

They claim to be bound up with poorly thought-out directives and rules and to be altogether over-regulated by the EU. They also make the point that these are brought about by unelected commissioners and beaurocrats.

Well said Simon Boyd of Reidsteel. Simon also happens to be the chairman of Business for Britain South West, so he’s speaking for many of our smaller local businesses, not just his own.

Meanwhile Barclays chief executive said he believed staying in would be advantageous for their “consumers and corporate clients.”  Consumers? Who is he talking about? Customers? Clients?  I’ve never heard bank customers referred to as “consumers” but maybe that’s because yet another American is in charge of the bank. And “corporate clients” refers to big businesses presumably, not the local, backbone-of-Britain, smaller businesses that could thrive under less red tape.

And another thing that has sprung to mind. Although we’re not part of the Euro (thank goodness for that anyway), it’s an integral part of the European Union. And it appears to be falling apart.

It was always a mad idea to try to tie strong economies like Germany to very weak and flaky economies like Greece – and quite a few others. But the Euro has tied them altogether and it’s only a matter of time before the whole pack of cards comes tumbling down. And if we’re part of the EU it is bound to have an impact on the UK isn’t it?

We already lost £billions when we were forced to exit to Exchange Rate Mechanism back in 1992.  Some of us have long memories but don’t  as a nation ever learn? John Major doesn’t anyway – he wants to stay in the EU.  But thankfully Norman Lamont, who was Chancellor at the time of Black Wednesday, is in the Out camp.John Major

The Right Honorable Sir John Major – firmly in favour of membership of the EU 🙁

The In – Out argument continues, but I’m sure you’re not surprised to hear that I’ve already made up my mind….

 

 

 

The EU

Well this subject deserves a whole website of its own – but I shall try to be restrained.

In or Out?

Well I’m currently in the Out camp, unless someone can persuade me otherwise. But I see that Barclays and Sunseeker – those expensive yachts – are declaring themselves in favour of staying in the EU.  Not surprised at Barclays. I used to work for them back in the day, and wouldn’t trust them as far as I can see them. And only yesterday they declared a big drop in profits, so they know what they’re talking about don’t they?

But disappointed in Sunseeker because they’re a respected brand in Poole and Dorset generally. But they’re now owned by a Chinese billionaire. When asked his opinion, he apparently remarked that it was only his opinion but he didn’t think the UK would leave the EU.  Now there’s a challenge!

We Brits don’t like being told what to do by the EU – and we don’t like being told what to do by Chinese billionaires either.

Now I’m sure there are lots of reasons why it would be better to stay in the EU – can’t think of many but I can see that exporters who concentrate on Europe might want to be in.

But I can think of a whole lot more reasons why we’d want to leave.

For a start, there’s a matter of our net annual contribution of about £8.5billion. That’s billion with a B!

On the subject of budget, our national debt is staggering. It’s £1.5 trillion (with a T). If I’ve calculated it correctly (and I may not have because it’s a lot of 000s), then I reckon we could use that £8.5 billion to pay down the debt. At that rate it would take over 176 years – and that’s without interest!  Oh dear, oh dear.

How did we get into this mess?

But back to the EU, because it’s just not going to go away is it?

Next issue, in my book, is immigration.  I don’t think anyone minds helping out refugees, especially since The West caused much of the misery in Syria. But most of the so-called refugees seem to be economic migrants – and we just can’t afford to support them all.

Angela Mercel is to blame, in my opinion, for much of the huge influx, since she invited them. So unfortunately they’re going to drown the EU. So let’s not let them take the UK down with them.

People are flooding into Turkey, then to Greece, and they just can’t cope. Nor could any country. Some of the EU nations are closing their borders. The whole EU is shutting down, becoming a region of turmoil. So why would be choose to be part of that? Once they’re granted entrance to Europe aren’t a lot of them going to head to the UK? And how are we going to be able to afford that?

Beats me.

Then there’s the federalisation of Europe and our growing lack of control over our own laws. Do we really want to be legislated by the Eurocrats and told what we can and can’t do? What our courts should do and how our laws should be interpreted or changed? Well I don’t think so.

It goes on and on ……. and here’s where the anarchist in me starts to show.

We have to stand up to these EU bullies and I’m pleased to see how many Tory politicians are coming out on the side of common sense. Call-me-Dave is showing his true colours, even though he claimed at first to be open-minded. He’s obviously a Europhile and I don’t think he’s objective at all.

I might feel differently if he’d come back from his talks with some real concessions. But I’ve yet to find anyone who thinks they made a scrap of difference. Please don’t treat us as fools Dave!

Ok rant over – time to take the blood pressure pills and have a nice soothing cuppa – until the next time the EU tries to take the p***

 

 

 

 

 

Litter Louts in Bournemouth

Why on earth do people drop litter?Litter in Bournemouth

This is a photo from the Bournemouth Echo today. Rubbish – literally.

Makes my blood boil because it’s so unnecessary. But thankfully the Council (who certainly get a share of my wrath on a regular basis) have done something positive about this horrible problem.

They’ve brought in some “private enforcement officers” to look for people littering and they’ve fined 290 so far in just 3 months. Now multiple that across the country and you’ve got an enormous litter blight.

So these private guys have done quite well and issued 20 times more fines than happened this time last year.

The fine is £75 – the same as for dog fouling (don’t get me started on that).

The Council doesn’t make any money from fines but they don’t have to pay the enforcement company either. The company just keeps the fines. So by my reckoning they’ve made £21,750 in 3 months. There are 5 litter officers so that’s £4,350 each, which is £1,450 per enforcer per month.  That’s not a whole lot, but they may be part-time and I suspect the income will pick up considerably in the summer when all the messy tourists alight on Bournemouth. Probably quite a nice little earner.

Let’s hope it proves a deterrent to those who can’t be bothered to drop their rubbish in the nearest bin.

The other thing that caught my eye today is that Bournemouth Magistrates Court is closing by the end of the year.

What?

Now I agree the building would be better demolished as it’s a monstrosity, but we certainly need to keep a court in Bournemouth. They’re also closing the one in Dorchester, so the only magistrates courts in the whole of Dorset will now be in Poole and Weymouth – not many for such a big county.

And don’t they say the prisons are overcrowded? Doesn’t that mean more cases are being heard? So doesn’t that mean we need more courts, not fewer?

Beats me how these beaurocrats think

 

 

 

 

 

Sir Terry RIP

I wasn’t planning to post as it’s Sunday, but one of my heroes, Sir Terry Wogan, died today and I wanted to say thank you Terry and RIP.

We used to love watching Eurovision when Terry was at the helm. Such a ridiculous show but his acerbic wit made it eminently watchable. And we’ve missed his radio show but loved seeing him make his annual appearance for Children in Need.

Sleep well Terry – one of the good guys and you’ll be sadly missed.

Sir Terry

 

 

Seaview Poole Council vandalism

Seaview Poole beforeSeaview Poole after

Before and after photos of the council’s descration at Seaview.

This is the kind of thing that really brings out the anarchist in me. Why on earth has the council done this? Have they no sense at all?

Apparently some residents complained they didn’t have a view and the trees were too high. This is the council’s response. Not some judicious pruning and the odd removal, but wholescale destruction of much-needed trees.

I’m speechless and so are many of the residents – some of whom are probably wishing they’d never opened their mouths about their precious view. They’re now calling for mature trees to be replanted. Well that won’t happen – wave goodbye to your foliage and hello scrubland.

The council has replied that as most of the felled trees were deciduous they will regrow from the stumps. Their theory is that this will be a benefit to wildlife, providing areas for nesting birds and creating diversity. They also added that they’ll be doing some replanting.

How long do these numpties think it takes to grow back a mature tree? Not going to happen this summer is it? So they’re spending our money (yet again) to restore some of the stuff they’ve ripped out.

As I say, I’m (almost) speechless.

Let’s have someone in charge who actually cares about our money, our heritage and our environment – not just one of the three.

Enough said – move on …..

 

 

Storm Gertrude

Oh dear another storm – Gertrude this time. Severe weather warning again with strong winds and heavy rain. Yet more rain …..

Well we can’t do much about the weather but I just hope the Council is prepared for whatever Gertrude brings.

 

Lottery winner found

Ha the second winner of the £66 million lottery win has been found! Hundreds of people had sent in claims hoping to get £33 million but now the genuine ticket holder has been found.

It’s quite amazing how these occasions bring out the cheats in society – and perhaps some of them are just desperate or even genuinely deluded. But I suspect the majority are greedy oportunists who think they can fool Camelot into paying them a very large fortune.

The real winners have declined publicity – and I don’t blame them. No way would I notify the world and open myself and my family to begging letters and abuse. It’s strange how people can change when they think you have more luck than them.

But everyone in the Worcester area will be watching their neighbours to see who buys a new car or makes a sudden move to the country.

We’ve all dreamed about that elusive win, but I don’t often buy a ticket – figure the odds are just ridiculous so I might as well save my money.

Ridiculous shortage of large stretchers

Doesn’t it defy belief that there are only 2 extra-large stretchers in the whole of Dorset?

These days when people are so much heavier and unfortunately there are loads of obese people, surely there should be more facilities available. So the health service is partly to blame for the death of a young lady from Wareham because they were unable to get her to hospital quickly. She had a blood clot on her lung.

That wasn’t the only problem according to the inquest in Bournemouth. There were also failures by the ambulance service. So there’s going to be an enquiry.

I feel so sorry for the poor lass and her friends and family, so I hope they’ll be putting in place systems to stop anything like this happening again.

But I’m also exasperated about the whole health system and refer to my comments yesterday about the cost of such investigations. Guess who’ll foot the bill again!

They’re going to develop land around Bournemouth Airport – funded by government grants, which is a rare piece of good news for the area, I hope. It’s expected that 10,000 new jobs will be created and they’re going to do something about the infrastructure and transport.

They’re also going to build 350 houses, half of them “affordable”. Well that will be debatable. With the average price of a terraced house in Bournemouth being around £200,000 and new houses usually going for more, what’s affordable? They’re not going to be selling them for half price are they?

I just don’t know how most youngsters can buy a house these days. They need £30k or so just for the deposit, plus stamp duty, solicitors’ costs and incidentals. I well know this because my daughter and her partner bought a house last year. They saved for ages and both have well-paid jobs so they’re in a better place than most I think. But even they had a hard job getting it all sorted and we had to loan them some money to pay all the costs. I wish I could just hand them a lump sum but unfortunately we’re not in a position to do that.

So when they say “affordable housing” it’s subjective.

Well at least it’s sunny today, though there’s still some flooding around Dorset and water has stopped trains running through parts of the New Forest – probably the wrong sort of flood. But today is a good day for a walk ….

Councils to be fined

National news today is that local councils are going to be fined if they don’t work 7 days a week to finish roadworks. Apparently the fine could be £5,000 a day when roadworks on major roads are unmanned.

Now on the surface this looks like a good idea. Some roadworks go on for months and it’s more than annoying when there’s nothing going on so you’re held up for no reason.

But there will always be unavoidable delays or even (dare I say it) beaurocratic incompetency! So who’s going to pay the fines? Are our worthy councillors going to be putting their hands in their pockets?  Of course not – we, the ratepayers will pay as always! So that’s not going to be good is it?

There’s similar cause for concern when schools get penalised or hospitals – anything run by national or local government. It’s the man in the street who pays fines or forks out for damages claims. Not that I blame someone who’s been seriously affected suing a hospital, for example, but it’s the rest of us who pay isn’t it?

That’s my rant for today – the pure injustice of having to pay for the mistakes of others when you try to take responsibility for your own actions. Why should we all be obliged to pay for everyone else’s mistakes or negligence?

So I sincerely hope that Bournemouth and Dorset councils are going to ensure that they don’t get fined for not getting on with roadworks.

Better news is that there will be a Super Puma Cougar and a Hornet at the Bournemouth Air Show this year, courtesy of the Swiss Air Force. I know little about aircraft but discovered that the Hornet is a supersonic jet and the Cougar is a helicopter. We love the air show so that’s something to look forward to. Sadly the Shoreham Air Show isn’t being held this year after the terrible accident in 2015 when a Hawker Hunter ploughed into the road, killing a number of people. Miraculously the pilot survived but I don’t think they’ve had the enquiry yet.

There has been some local flooding in Dorset following the rain over the last 24 hours, but I haven’t heard of any major problems, so perhaps it hasn’t been quite as bad as expected – though there may be more to come.