Thursday, December 13, 2007

A Little Sea Air

"The poorest man may in his cottage bid defiance to all the forces of the crown. It may be frail - its roof may shake,the wind may blow throught it, the storm may enter but the King of England cannot enter." - William Pitt.

Following rapidly on the heels of the Housing Minister's announcement of a new home's building priority - further below - we have another story appearing in the papers today.

It appears that "Pensioners will be encouraged to give up council houses in the cities and move to the country.

The elderly will be paid cash and helped to move, so that their homes can be given to families.

Labour said the plan would ease overcrowding. Housing Minister Yvette Cooper, who put forward the plans, said: "Too many children are stuck in cramped houses. How can they get on at school if they haven't got space to do their homework? Kids need space, and so do their parents."

But critics warned it would put pressure on pensioners to quit social housing.

Middle-aged couples living in large council houses in cities could be forced to move to the country

The plans will mean the elderly, and some middle-aged "empty nesters", get priority for small council or housing association homes outside cities."

Ed: William Pitt never imagined the appearance of New Labour. It all rather sounds like a covert form of eviction to me. When I wrote the earlier story, "The Biggest Priority of All", I never realised that the Government had such a dramatic 'Re-distribution' proposal up its sleeve.

Bus loads of pensioners facing compulsory purchase and being sent to view retirement flats in depressed seaside towns, courtesy of Minister, Yvette Cooper, What do you think?

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree with this policy whole-heartedly. Why should single pensioners, or empty-nesters occupy three bedroomed homes that are either being used as storage rooms or let out to lodgers ? They were given the houses in the first place to bring up their families, and having served their purpose, it is time to downsize and give other families the chance. It is called consideration. I can site several examples of family members refusing to downsize based purely on sentiment. There are many advantages to downsizing, lower fuel bills, less maintenance etc. and is pure selfishness to hold on to a local authority property with more bedrooms than you need thereby depriving families of the opportunity to live comfortably.
For once, I agree with this Labour policy. I would add that if the tenant can show just reason why they should remain in a 3 bedroomed house when they are a couple with no dependants, there they should be exempt. It is actually against the tenancy agreements to sub=let bedrooms, but how many are doing so to supplement a pension ? Further to this, there is always the 'back door' way of getting your own local authority house, you live with an elderly parent until they expre and take over the tenancy. This way you avoid the long housing queues. This is a racket going on in Basingstoke where tenants have been encouraged for some years to downsize according to their needs.

Anonymous said...

4.28 would have been at home in Stalinist Russia! What is missing here is that one simple but vital word; CHOICE! If Councils wish to encourage 'large home' occupiers to settle in Thanet by the Sea, and it is the retired occupiers choice, then I'm fine with that.But to force people in retirement out of their 'home'(people make houses into homes, any other Stalinists out there) for 30 years or more to be re-allocated to a strange place away from their friends, families, local, bowls club, British Legion Club etc is for me,anathema. People are not people in Brown's Britain any more but economic units to be re-located at the whim of the authorities.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely 601 pm. The other unspoken point might be that if you force the elderly away from all they know and love, they'll probably just give up and die. This would enable Bottle Brown to save on the state pension bill too.
Thrift and fascism in one swipe!
Very ironic when you realise that a lot of the people Labour will target fought against fascism in World War II.

Anonymous said...

As long as they're not forced on us, we have enough old people sucking up resources in this area.

Anonymous said...

The one thing we have in this country is freedom of speech. It may sound as though I would be better suited to a Stalinist Russia but at least I am practical.
Sentiment has no place here, it is practicalities that count. What on earth is the point of an elderly person occupying a property that they can ill afford to heat or maintain when young families are crying out for decent sized homes ! In your sickly sentimental world we would see the next generation squeezed into ghettos to accommodate the elderly in inappropriate housing. What is the sense in that ? Get real, purpose built homes for the elderly is the only answer, and we already have them in shletered accommodation. As I said before, sentiment should not rule over practicality. The next generation are the ones keeping the elderly in pensions so lets look after them. Regarding the old chestnut....did they fight a war so that they could be treated like this ? Yes, they did, they fought a war so that youngsters could enjoy a better life, living in family homes. It that is facism, then bring it on.

tony flaig bignews said...

I think this is just what your tory group needs since for some reason, it seems quite happy to allow acres of granny flats to be built and no doubt your lot think all these granny farms are part of Thanets regeneration which they are not.

Bus loads of grannies from London etc is just what developers need to fill these grim mean little blocks now taking over the thanet landscape. Particularly since your lot are encouraging just this sort of development on the Dreamland site, simply because you don't have any vision for Thanets future.

The Grim Reaper said...

Outstanding 6.37 Embark happily on the slope of practicality. Never mind human dignity or respect, why not just euthanase the non-productive elderly. You could extend the initiative to anyone not pulling their weight and taking up valuable space. How about the sick, the disabled, the unskilled, the unemployed, people who can't speak English, people who are different, people you don't like etc, etc. Where does your practicality end?
Ever read history? You should. You might be better informed. Some German blokes got together and decided to be very practical in the 1930's and the whole business turned out to be very unpleasant for millions. Fortunately some "sentimental" Nations got together too and beat the crap out of them!
One day you will be old and helpless and will have to rely on the kindness of others. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

And who owns Dreamland??????
Wake up and get real.

Anonymous said...

Which government has passed laws that stop local councils blocking the developers plans. Doh! Labour and the Scottish mafia running it who want to bury Southern England.
Why don't you actually READ some of Labour's planning laws and then complain in the right direction. You might also ask them to send some money to Thanet instead of giving our taxes to fund FREE Scottish Universities and prescriptions etc.

Anonymous said...

6;29 the resources are sucked up by lazy buggers who don't work, don't want to work but still have sky tv, fags, booze and holidays abroad. If you work you are paying their benefits. If you don't work you're sucking up resources too!.

Anonymous said...

Oh well answered Grim Reaper! Echos of much missed Dr Doom?

Anonymous said...

Hey Mr. Reaper, or can I call you Grim ? I AM elderly, I fought in the war, I've done my bit. That is exactly why I feel I can speak my mind, becaue people like me went to war so that we could speak freely. I live in sheltered housing, so I speak with some authority. It won't be long, I imagine, before you are I meet, but until then I can see the real picture, my generation have had the best, now it is time to step aside and give the youngsters a chance and if that means freeing up housing for them, then we should be doing just that.

grim reaper said...

Of course you are.
And I am the one, true and undisputed King of the Britons because I am not covered in crap and have a sword from an aquatic bint!

Not so old codger said...

Me, I can be any-body you want me to be or I want to be, but the bottom line 9.57 is that I don't want to be forced from MY HOME (not TDC house number 3,021) just because my mrs and I are rattling round a bit in the old place. I'll go into sheltered housing when I am ready for it, not forced into it by the likes who think like you do. Totalitarian thinking is not necessarily the preserve of fascists and communists, quite clearly.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree that the first post does have a sinister almost Stalinist tone. Should we be surprised at these proposals though given the government's fetish for five and ten year plans? As I recall these were big in Soviet Russia as well. I can see the argument for freeing up space, but the only way it would work is if it were voluntary and there was a cash incentive. After all we already pay millions of people to be poor in this country what's a few million more pounds down the drain?

Anonymous said...

9.57 You're in sheltered housing already. Were you forced to go?

Anonymous said...

7:55 They'll be doing "Great leaps forward" next and then we'll all be knackered!

Anonymous said...

11:37pm, if you pay rent to a social landlord, or even a private landlord, then it is NOT your home. If you are paying to a social landlord then your home belongs to society, not to YOU. Therefore, you have NO right to demand you continue to live in a property which is no longer fit for purpose. If you wanted to claim rights to a property then you should have bought one.

Anonymous said...

11.32 you missed the point I was making iat 11.37! It might be my landlords house but it is my HOME. People make homes not builders and landlords.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I was forced to go into sheltered accommodation. I was forced by my poor health, my poor bank balance and loneliness. Any pangs of regret I had about leaving my three bedroomed home that I had lived in for 32 years were countered by the knowledge that it was time to give it up and let someone else enjoy the space that I no longer needed. That house had given me somewhere to bring up my family and I was very happy there, but I realised, unlike some of my generation, that it was time to hand back the property so that someone else could benefit. I have no regrets now. My flat is comfortable, warm and I have company whenever I want it. I know now why few people have an opinion, it seems to me that if you 'go against the tide' then you get a barage of abuse. Not quite what I fought for in WWII, but hey, ignorance is everywhere isn't it.

Anonymous said...

Well said 11.37. Exactly my point.

Anonymous said...

Well that shut the critics up didn't it ! Still think he is a Stalinist then do you ? I think he has made a very valid point, that doesn't make him a communist !

Anonymous said...

No, 1.35! You miss the point also!!! 4.19 despite using the term'forced' actually made the decision himself! He wasn't told by a TDC admin clerk that TDC had decided that he must be moved because his home was being re-allocated. Whilst his motives were commendable, that was his decision; he controlled his life-style choice. So, no, it hasn't shut up the critics and no-one has called him a communist. Totalitarian attitudes are not the sole preserve of the extreme ends of the political spectrum. The erosion of logical thinking is the bane of our modern lives and a quite decent guy who fought totalitarianism in its worst form, by lack of clarity of thought ends up propounding a totalitarian case!

Anonymous said...

Also 4.19 assumes that just because his life is a train wreck that other elderly people are in a similar situation.
Not true and he damn well doesn't speak for me with all this "my life is over" rubbish.