Tuesday 6 January 2015

A Stroll through Margate

A stroll through Margate, in bracing weather, just the thing, after the peak Christmas festivities.

New Years day a bit of an anticlimax but one that gives the godless amongst us a focus of celebration.

A gander at the wonders contained in the Turner Contemporary, to clear the mind and lift the spirits.

So how sad, to come across a blood stained footpath, even sadder as I point out to my partner so as to avoid getting blood on their shoes,  being interrupted by helpful,  innocent young kids who casually detail another stabbing, just as if it's a normal ordinary occurrence.

It makes you think just how will Thanet ever climb out of the mire, still it's not all bad, there was a nice fresh breeze, to carry away the smell of cannabis, the drug of choice for those on a budget and frightened of a days work.

Monday 18 August 2014

Charity begins at Home

Or rather the letterbox and while it may begin at home, it appears it could well finish some considerable distance from my front door, with the clothes in Kenya or Poland and the money in Lithuania.

I'm amazed at the amount of post and mail that comes through the door the majoprity of it being junk every day, it seems someone is offering to make me bigger than I already am, with pizzas, kebabs, Chinese takeaway, or fried chicken added to the dross often a bag for a charity will be left on the doormat some of which are a little ambiguous if you ask me,the one illustrated to the top of this post is a case in point.

Do not delay! collection for "breast cancer prevention" emotive stuff and ribbon logo which is a very emotive because my sister was diagnosed with breast cancer.

So I take this a bit of post a little more seriously, further reading makes it clear that a commercial company will be collecting the clothes and they state that the project will receive at least £100 for every tonne of clothes collected but not less than £2000 per month. Sounds good but doesn't really clarify how much goes to Charity.

Still this got me thinking how much is a ton of clothes worth and reading an article in the financial Times from 2012 it appears at that time such commodity was worth £650 per ton so I just wonder what happens to £550 the company doesn't guarantee to Charity.

Anyway delving a little more I visited the company's website where apparently they mention that they are a member of the Fund Raising Standards Board sounds good but then as with so many of these bodies it happens to be one of those self-regulatory organisations, paid for by those it regulates.

I think businesses raising money for charity ought to have a clear indication of how much of their turnover results in funds in the pockets of charities if I were they were to say that a clear percentage* went to a charity we could make clear choice.

Anyway I rang the trade or charity organisation FRSB that regulates this sort of business and have been told that the gentleman who deals with this such matters will be back tomorrow.

Today I received a sticker for Heart UK not the most well know charity, who use the same firm, again making a vague statement of how much will go to charity, a couple of days after the British Heart Foundation left a collection bag. 

No doubt everything is above board, but if you believe charity begins at home it's probably best to drop off donations directly to charity shops. Rather than arrange to have stuff picked up by a business with and proceeds going overseas to charity which you,ve probably never heard.

Don't get me wrong business is business, and they probably collect more donations for charity, than might otherwise be the case, and the clothes collected are generally sold off to the third world, but that said lets make sure charities get the most out of the deal.

*Finally FRSB recommends "There should also be clear information about what proportion of the proceeds will go to the charity" The company issuing these bags as per picture give only a vague indication.

Thursday 14 August 2014

VisitEngland boss tours Margate to see the sights, Me I immerse myself in the ambience

The boss of VisitEngland has toured Margate to witness the developments since the arrival of Turner contemporary I myself did a similar thing today at lunchtime when I popped out to get a newspaper

Unlike the supremo from visit-England James Beresford I represent nobody but myself. That said I'm sure we are all equally important in this little world and my first impression of Margate today coming in from the Badlands of Cliftonville was that the place continues to be run down and probably more menacing than it ever has been. 

My first impression was about as bad as it can be, coming into the old shopping centre round the back of the council offices  desperate, I think is the word and desolate the area is empty apart from a lone dog tied up to the railings by the public toilets the shops mainly closed the bank empty for many a year.

Needing to use the toilet I was rather disconcerted to hear voices as I was taking a leak, emanating from the cubicle behind me, as you can imagine quite an unsettling atmosphere, God knows what was going on because I didn't wanna stay and listen but that seems nothing unusual in Margate, probably just sharing a needle.

All part of our diverse culture I suppose the High Street is as ever downhill with the recent addition of a burnt out building to complement other burnout buildings nearby.

Having time on my side, I thought I would buy a newspaper and some lunch, which I did and then went to the gardens, just above the clock tower and in front of Giorgio's to enjoy.

Unlike the Chief Executive of visit England I am already familiar with the wonderful new facilities that Margate has which range from the Turner Centre, the beach ball area and Dreamland rising from the ashes, so I concentrated on the people who presumably have taken advice and inspiration from the quality newspapers, like the Telegraph Guardian Times and Independent and decided to soak up the atmosphere along with a humble bloke such as myself in Margate 

I cannot tell you how pleasing it is to wallow in the ambience exuding from our guests from the metropolis and further afield a real cosmopolitan crowd in Margate, I must say how surprising it is, to see these middle class readers guzzle strong larger, and I know Guardian readers are bound to be a bit scruffy but tattoes and "statement" dogs?   

Slightly unnerving I seemed to attract the attention of Thanet Councils security cameras as I walked through the Centre, why me, why not those Bliming toffs, the council could surely photograph them enjoying booze and drugs.

Wednesday 13 August 2014

LET'S SORT'EM OUT ! Thanet Council Rubbish Alert

Thanet Council despite a sh t storm in the local media last week have yet to apologise for their abysmal treatment of local taxpayers, as you might expect, it looks like Thanet's mediocracy our leaders such as Cllr Mike Harrison have shown little grip on recycling.

Cllr Harrison (Cabinet member for rubbish and operational stuff) stated that “Thankfully the majority of residents do contain their recycling appropriately" which begs the question why did bin men leave most recycle bins un-emptied last week.

Still bin men, seem to have a new tactic in hacking off residents, usually my bin doesn't get emptied till late morning, however in a new terror tactic this morning they sneaked up the road about three hours early, blighter's, and I doubt I was the only one to miss out on the collection.

Maybe Cllr Mike Harrison is trying to emulate the appalling performance of his predecessor Cllr Alan Poole who oversaw the chaos last Christmas when some of us had rotting food and rubbish festering for weeks, just as side issue I see Poole who flounced out of the Labour after he and a friend got the old tin tack from the cabinet flounced back into the Labour party, I imagine Poole's done the maths and realises that nobody, in there right mind would vote for him in next years as an independent.

Any way let's sort'em them out, Labour are flipping useless, they can't sort themselves out! they can't sort out Ramsgate Harbour, they've struggled to sort out Pleasurama, the EKO scandal, they proved they can't handle the finances giving away multi-millions Transeuropa another million for ignoring advice not to block animal exports, wasted millions on the East Kent Access road, damned Manston airport with feint praise and are burying it.

Give Labour the tin tack in next years local elections don't vote for them.

Wednesday 6 August 2014

Thanet council punish local residents and dump bin collections

Thanet council is never afraid to bite the hand that feeds, whether it be Manston Airport, Ramsgate Eastcliff development or the campaign they are running this week to force residents to comply with there strict waste management scheme

Last week thanet council publicised their concerns about refuse collections and how far as recycling was concerned they did not think the public were cooperating.

TDC issued a press release on the matter indicated that it was aware of problems with recycling waste for some time but has allowed local residents some leeway after system was introduced at the start of the year.

As with many things the council has unfortunately allowed a problem to develop into a major crisis, such as we have seen it with Ramsgate Harbour, the Eastcliff development and EKO.

Instead of politely reminding residents of a problem by perhaps attaching a letter to bins advising that recycling bins were not correctly filled, power crazed local officials have decided rather than manage the situation in a respectful way, instead power crazed (IMHO) as usual they've decided to cause maximum irritation, firstly by not emptying in bins, then attaching an insulting label which cannot be removed presumably to forever brand wrong doers.

I' m not blaming those who have to collect the bins, but I do think that those who manage our refuse are not up to the job, as many of us remember, from the end of last year many had to wait upto three or four weeks despite endless misinformation from officers and councillors.

I took a stroll this week after Thanet bin men had paid a flying visit and estimate that perhaps 50% of bins had been left behind, imagine that many like myself assumed we'd sorted it the rubbish correctly.

Should we residents who pay the wages and allowances of officers like McGonigal, Homer (boss while the other one's suspended sorry on leave) or councillors like Johnson and Mike Harrison,  expect a little better treatment.

Take Cllr Mike Harrison, back in 2012 the Labour party gave him a second chance after the great "shirt lifter" incident, and now he's back as cabinet member for operational services, laying down the law

 “Since the start of the scheme the council has allowed some time for residents to adjust to the changes to their collections and has taken a more relaxed approach, but we now need to stick more rigidly to our rules. This essentially means that if items are not put in the right container, the recycling will not be collected. (Margate bloke says) "why didn't you instead of taking a relaxed approach, take business like approach and leave a leaflet with the bins explaining any problems?

“This is not an attempt to inconvenience our residents, but is a necessary measure to ensure that the efforts of those who do recycle correctly are not wasted. I hope that residents will understand that by taking what may seem to be a tougher approach, we will ultimately see much wider benefits for Thanet. ” (Margate bloke says) "Why the heck inconvienience people why not have reminded them during the last 8mths

To sum up Labour introduce the current waste management, from the outset it was an almighty flipping cock up, led by that former? Labour bod Poole, if you ask me Labour councillors from Aldred through to Worrow and Harrison in the middle are only in it for one reason and it ain't you or I.   I'm surprised that bin men have the time to forensically examine the bins,  still anything is possible with authoritarian Labour.

Sunday 22 June 2014

Scobie attacks his own party policy

A key policy of the last Labour government education was firmly attacked when Will Scobie spoke during the Ellington and Hearson school debate, Labours young general election candidate condemned tuition fees, saying that they " encapsulate so much that is wrong with this country".

Not sure who he thinks should pay for his education, but it was his future Labour colleagues, that loaded him with his debt, but on the positive side he will no doubt, earn more that the average local resident, (even the freeloading benefit street crowd).

I just hope that Mr Scobie also considers why we the public are handing he and his co councillors not inconsiderable sums of money for showing up at the council meetings.  I note that Will has some success as a canvasser for Labour, I wonder if he's considered a job in Sales?

Still just for Scobie here's a link, may I suggest if Scobie wishes to get elected he visits his parties past before he puts his foot in his mouth again. Should we be stupid enough to vote him in, at least he wont be bumping into comrade Blunkett the man responsible for his student loans, since he's leaving Westminster before the moaning Scobie generation arrive.

Wednesday 28 May 2014

Sudan an example of sharia law

None of us know everything, but hidden inside my newspaper today were details of a Christian women condemned to death for marrying a Christian man by a rather barbaric sharia legal system operated in Sudan.

Who understands what motivates Muslims to think it lawful to murder a women with a young child or sentence her to a hundred lashes.

I'm not a Muslim myself but I know some, I never question their belief but I will now.

For impartial details click here, which I'm sure will enlighten you, I don't for a second think all Muslims are evil but clearly those murdering a young mother and wife are.

As I wrote this a BBC news report of a murder of a young women on the streets of Pakistan plays in the background. An honour killing? Really?