Sunday, February 26, 2012

Spring Comes Early

Dusk on Saturday evening was a colourful event. Not only were four of the planets lined-up neatly with the point of the crescent Moon in a cloudless sky but here on the north cost of Kent we had one of the artist's fabulous 'Turner sunsets' to enjoy.

I was out walking the dog and tried to catch it on my iPhone camera and the result, given its limitations, really wasn't too bad I thought!

Yesterday, I was over to Compton Abbas in Dorset to fly a banner and by mid-afternoon, the band of spring-like weather stretched all the way along the south of the country, giving some fantastic views on the way home. I missed hitting a large buzzard by a matter of yards at several thousand feet over Sussex, enough for me to see the startled expression on its feathered face and perhaps for the bird to hear me say *****!

Tearing myself away from Katie Price's riveting column in today's Sunday Sun newspaper and catching-up with Friday's equally 'soaraway' Thanet Gazette, I notice that the letters pages are increasingly becoming a platform for personal remarks. The tone of the letter written by Cllr Jack Cohen, directed at Cllr Alasdair Bruce, was quite uncalled for and I thought, petulant, discourteous and misleading too, as it used the excuse of seeking support for the Minnis Bay day centre, to attack Cllr Bruce's position on achieving a sensible and consistent local parking policy, a subject where both Cllr Cohen and Cllr Worrow, remain isolated in their demands for special treatment for Birchington. I have added a response from Cllr Bruce to the comments on this entry.

Changing the subject completely for something more romantic than parish politics, it's a Leap Year on Wednesday and I already have one, if not two marriage proposals to fly as the ladies use this once in a four year excuse to try and nail down indecisive partners. If you are a fan of Ice Age and the character 'Scrat' then you may have the same picture in your head as I have.


Anonymous said...

With reference to Mr Cohen’s comments (February 24th) about myself and the Birchington parking issue, I have no intention of entering into a character debate with him, but I would like to correct his statement. The Labour councillors did not support adopting the half-hour free parking in Birchington; they did however give support to this matter being considered as part of the overall parking debate, which as there was already an island-wide parking review underway, was the only course available to take. Parish councillors have the luxury of fighting for their own area but as District councillors, we are not in a position to isolate wards for consideration and I do not believe it is fair to raise the hopes of the Birchington constituents until the full review is completed – be it by a Conservative or Labour cabinet. Once the review is complete, an island-wide parking policy will be put forward to the elected council by the officers, and hopefully benefit all parts of the island.

However, as a District councillor– it is for me to defend against any KCC decision that affects services to constituents in my ward and on the island, and I am glad that Mr Cohen is in support of my actions on this point regarding the Minnis Day Centre.

Dr Alasdair Bruce

Thanet District Councillor for Birchington South Ward

John Worrow said...

Come on Simon!,

you neglected to mention that Conservative councillors, Simon Day and Keith Coleman-Cooke, also supported the parking motion. I parked in Old Margate yesterday, where they have an hour free parking.Today I parked in Westgate for free, and last week I parked at the Conservative ward, end of Northdown road for free!

DrM. said...


You may be confused by what was 'supported' in concept and what was not in practice, once the financial implication was made clear. You can find this explained in some depth in one of my earlier posts on the subject, when it first appeared.

My own guess now, given Labour's own parking review since, is that your parking initiative or bargaining position is pretty much a dead duck in its original form because the council has a duty to take a wider view across the island as a whole and not simply gerrymander to oblige two independent councillors who, as luck may have it, have a rather disproportional influence on what is important and what is not to the local economy.

John Worrow said...

Simon.You continute to ignore the fact that Conservative councillors, Simon Day and Keith Coleman-Cooke, also supported the parking motion, along with the majority of councillors from Thanet. Were Simon and Keith also isolated in their demands for so-called special treatment for Birchington?

DrM. said...

John, you may know the answer as well as I do.

So if Keith and Simon, 'Post Facto' wish to lend their support to your proposals, then they can chime in here, as I won't speak for them.

Let's wait and see shall we?

Anonymous said...

John, as you've deleted your blog & also delete any comments that ask polite questions via your facebook group, can you tell us here (a) when & where your proposed public meeting will be, & (b) if the Minnis Bay Gay Festival is still going ahead? Thank you.

Tim Clark said...

Notwithstanding who supports what, why should Birchington have special treatment? Apart from the fact that it is represented in part by two turncoat Councillors with a disproportionate influence on our minority rulers.
And Simon, your double Captchas are becoming increasingly difficult to read.

DrM. said...


Thanks for pointing this out as Google appears to have turned 'Captcha's' on without me knowing about it and also stopped sending me a copy of the comment by email for approval, which is the normal route.

I have changed the settings back to what they were before.

Tim Clark said...

Thanks. The Captchas have been on for a long time - maybe as much as a year - but until recently they were just a single word. Within the last week or so this went up to two words but they've all gone now.

DrM. said...

Has anyone noticed like I have that the 'troll' appears to have disappeared of late? I can't see the usual evidence of him playing agent provocateur with multiple personalities and left wing views across the island's weblogs.

Perhaps he's finally taken the advice that he should seek professional help.

Anonymous said...

The troll, a left wing civil servant by his own admission, has probably now used up all his sick leave, taken the government's overly generous Voluntary Early Release package and moved off to somewhere exotic like Brighton.

Certainly his absence from the blogs, constant attacks on every one else perceived as Tory and defence of JW will not be sadly missed. Let us all hope it is permanent.

Ken Gregory said...

Simon, the Troll, or Creature of the Night, has tried to take up residence on my blog, but does not like publicity, so has given up for a while, but I am sure his one brain cell will 'kick in ' soon and we will all be blessed with more moronic comments!

Anonymous said...

apropos the sunset/views - any chance that the Mildreds Bay signage is going to be resited when it goes back up? I know its safety-etc - but first view anyone gets of the bay is a damn great sign, and it does get in the way of a good photo (or heart-stopping moment)