What do you think about the scheme to have members of the public become unpaid “road wardens” tasked with filling in minor potholes in the region’s roads (major ones will still be filled in by the council, or so they say)? Well, the first thing is obvious – it is yet another example of a cash-stretched council pushing a cost onto someone else. Not all of the costs are immediately obvious. One obvious one is the time of volunteers and any extra insurance they may need (the council’s public liability insurance covers volunteers, but they may require extra personal insurance). Less obvious is the cost to individuals who would have been employed to do those jobs but who are now unemployed, and, the obvious corollary, the cost to the state of unemployment benefit. Then, assuming that the work will not be done by volunteers to the same high standard as would be the case if it were done by full time workers, resulting damage to vehicles.
What do you think?
One thing that is certain: if things continue as they are, we will be seeing more initiatives of this sort.
The past week must have been a bit up and down for Thomas Carr and his team at The Olive Room. First, they were awarded their well-deserved Michelin star.
However, on Sunday 9th October between 10.40 and 11.30am, the restaurant was robbed and £5-600 was stolen. Can you imagine how Tom and his team must be feeling? From the euphoria of the Michelin star, they then come up against the worst of humanity. On a practical level, margins for small restaurants are always tight, and whilst the Olive Room is probably doing better than many in Ilfracombe, this sort of loss could be devastating. If you have any information about the theft, please tell the police.
Where will you be on Saturday 15th October? From 2pm there will be a march from the Candar to the Tyrrell Hospital to show our support for our local hospitals, and specifically the North Devon District Hospital in Barnstaple. Before the march, there will be a stall on the High Street selling badges, T-shirts and other memorabilia. Please support them. If you can, wear something red. Just to remind you, the over-paid bureaucrat in charge of vandalising our hospitals said that there are no red lines. We say “There is a red line.”
Remember, this is a non-party political movement. No one, or very few, is likely to agree with every detail of a party’s policy, and it is quite possible to support the Conservative party and still be opposed to the hospital cuts.
Dr. S. G. Barber FRCP, MB, ChB, BSc, DTM&H wrote an open letter to those proposing to vandalise our hospitals on the question of stroke patients, a subject on which he might be presumed to know a bit, and certainly a bit more than the bean counters and pen pushers who seem to have taken over the NHS. His letter concluded:
“The evidence and advice are international and overwhelming. I suggest that the closure of acute stroke facilities in North Devon is ill-advised and would not only cause avoidable deaths but also condemn survivors to the possible awful life of permanent paralysis, blindness or inability to eat and drink. I appeal for planners to reconsider this proposal.”
You can find the full text of the letter as well as lots more information in the SOHS newsletter at http://www.sohs.org.uk/documents/SOHS-newsletter-6-8-October.pdf
And finally… You may not like the choice of political parties we have over here, but just think of the choice facing Americans!