Wednesday, 30 November 2011
Tuesday, 29 November 2011
At 12:59 the chancellor announced that the A380 Kingskerswell bypass would be built. At last. The south west also got a small gift in that our water bills will go down by £50 per household. South West Water is the most expensive in the country and even with this 50 quid it will still be the most expensive in the country. On the down side (there always has to be a down side) my heating allowance arrived to day and is for £200 which is 50 quid less than last year. You can't win them all.
Saturday, 26 November 2011
Public sector workers ( some of them ) are going put on strike on Wednesday. The ones that will effect the most people , unless you happen to be travelling in or out of Heathrow, are the teachers. Parents of younger children will be effected if they are working as they will have to either pay for extra child care, stay of work or risk letting their loved ones spend the day on the streets. Other disruptions will be to rubbish collections and to parking attendants. Piles of uncollected rubbish littering the streets and cars parked anywhere their owners feel like parking them will be an added hazard to anyone trying to move about. To add insult to injury Union St and Fleet St will be closed from 10:00 am to allow the striking workers to march through town to force home their message.
And what exactly is that message? Well I'll tell you. It is that supposedly well educated and allegedly intelligent people haven't got the brains they were conceived with never mind born with. Funds for public sector pensions have been paid for, until now, out of a seemingly bottomless pit called the tax payer. When I was a teacher the government took 6% of my salary to pay for my pension. When I worked for Stagecoach they also took a percentage of my wages to pay for my pension. The difference is Stagecoach invested the cash they took from me and put the proceeds into a pension fund. So when I get my pension from Stagecoach it hasn't been paid for by some one who got on a bus and paid his fare sometime last week. But the 6% the government took from me all those years ago wasn't put in a fund to grow and pay my pension. The money the government collected from you and me last month in the form of income tax is what is used to pay my teachers pension and I am getting a little concerned that us tax payers might not be able to sustain the level of giving required to keep all us public sector pensioners in Pensions. So is the government, twenty years too late in my opinion, but better late than in 10 more years. Hopefully they will manage for the next 20 years, after that I probably won't care. But what about the long term future, it isn't a problem that will go away unless the effects of global warming come upon us faster and much more savagely than most people expect.
So; don't go on strike, manage with what you get or eventually you won't get anything.
Friday, 25 November 2011
I know that Transport Malta and Arriva have recently amended the routes, but do we really now have a Sliema-Enfield Town link, as spotted on this bus on the Strand in Valletta?
And when they get to Enfield I assume there is a return journey. Would my bus pass get me there? It'd be cheaper than Ryan Air even if it did take a day or two longer. Well done, once again to Arriva because if nothing else, they really are having fun in the sun in Malta
Saturday, 19 November 2011
I've just got back from a week in Manchester where the weather was fine except for the day I chose to take a drive up into the Peak District. That day it was thick fog, down to 15 mph at times. But a good time all the same.
So lunch time to day I went down to the Harbour for a walk round and a couple of pints and maybe take the odd photo or two. These are a couple of the ones I took. Three men were arrested for driving a car, possibly not theirs, onto the pavement to get some cash out of the ATM at the HSBC. I know parking can be difficult here in Torquay but this is an extreme way to avoid car parking fees.
There is a item in the paper about a call centre that was coming to Torquay and hopefully providing 500 out of work people with a job. Seems the place they wanted isn't big enough but they can't have their call centre in a bigger building because there isn't planning permission in place. With 500 hundred jobs at stake you would think the Mayor would drive round to all the homes of the councillors on the planning permission committee, take them to the Town Hall and say," You aren't leaving here until planning permission is granted for the call centre. You've got 20 mins before the shotgun comes out and blood will be shed."
But this is Torbay so there might actually be a meeting some time next summer to set up a working party to discover if Torbay does in fact have a planning permission committee. Usually people who apply for planning permission give up and go somewhere else or die of extreme old age or boredom.
And in Complete Contrast and an example to our beloved but apparently inapt council. An other item in the same paper is about Elliot Massey a
Torbay Boys' Grammar pupil. Elliot, helped by a group of friends, run a website TorbayBusRoutes which has around 35,000 visitors a month. It has timetables and information on all six local bus companies.
He has also been concentrating on developing MyStop, his revolutionary new computer/phone app to help local bus users. The simple mobile-friendly MyStop service allows users to check on the next bus from their mobile phone and all departures by logging on and selecting where they are. All this from a young man who collapsed on the Strand a few months ago and spent over a week in intensive care where he was diagnosed with heart-stopping ventricular fibrillation. That's something most people don't know they've got until it kills them. He now has a defibrillator implant to stop another cardiac arrest and takes beta blockers. None of this stops him though and I for one am waiting to see what turns up next.
sorry I got the link wrong last time round and thanks to Simon for mentioning it.
Tuesday, 15 November 2011
On Monday I borrowed my brother's car. I wanted to go somewhere in South Manchester so drove down Princess Rd. Now ever since I can remember there has been a bus depot in Princess Rd. In fact in 1948 I went to the school, Bishop Bilsborrow Memorial School, that was right next to the bus depot. From time to time our football would get kicked over the wall for the school playground into the depot and I used to go round to collect it. The bus drivers usually made us wait at the entrance while they went and got the ball but now and then we went for it ourselves. So this was the first and as it happens the only enclosed bus depot I have ever been in. It was huge, smelling of oil and full of noise and loads of mysterious machinery and a few buses. Always an exciting place to visit.
So there I was driving down Princess Rd looking out for the big clock tower. Under the clock tower was the original entrance, very high for the trams to get in but by the time I started school the trams had all been taken up to Hyde Rd depot, had petrol poured over them and set on fire. Sad. Past Clarmont Rd and no sign of the clock, I was getting worried, what had happened to it?
I was soon to find out, sadly.
Saturday, 12 November 2011
Thursday, 10 November 2011
Tuesday, 1 November 2011
Then I went by on Monday only to find the tree surgeons had cut the tree in to small pieces so it could be removed from the site more easily. Turns out it had been blow down some time in the early hours of Monday morning, fortunately the elderly couple weren't still walking by.
Torquay United won again on Saturday and won the midweek game. That's 2 games won out of the last 8. Plymouth Argyle aren't doing too well, still stuck at the bottom of the Table. At least the saga of administration is over now that local business man James Brent has taken over the club. Well done Mr Brent.