Musings From The Padded Cell

Councillors Caught Shafting In Budget Meeting!

“Better keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool rather than open it and remove all doubt.”
Denis Thatcher perhaps describing one or two who sit in City Hall?

The asylum was full for the budget meeting as the usual bunch of freeloaders and incompetents met in hope that the cuts had not bitten into the chocolate Hob-Nobs. Read on…

All In It Together – Deep Shit

What’s a gal to do? Hapless goes mad – T&A 23/2/17

That worthy bunch of stellar folks down in City Hall approved cuts to just about anything the other night bar – surprise, surprise – their number and the cost of their incompetence to the electorate.

Councillors Cooke and Salam accused each other of shafting although really it is us voters that should feel most shafted.

Meanwhile, my local councillors – the Glum Party sorry Lib Dems – won’t be putting forward any amendments. Helpful then!

Lost amongst all the detail was this relating to increases in local parish precepts and some that were actually frozen, including where I grew up, Wrose: The lowest parish precept is paid in Wrose, where Band D properties pay just £7.50 a year.

And the local councillors here? Hapless, Ross-Shaw and Greenwood. Anybody smell anything?

Finally, as the T&A blog covered the meeting they ran a caption contest with a picture of the Lord Mayor. So here goes with my late entry.

“We’re all shafted!”

One Hundred Years Ago

More tales from yester-year here.

Up Town, Definitely Not Top Ranking!

Left to rot – T&A 30/1/17

A few weeks ago the local rag ran a story about plans to restore the top end of Bradford, almost abandoned since the new Broadway opened.

Although numerous independent business (sic) have opened in that area over the past few years, parts remain blighted by empty buildings, many of which are listed but are now a shadow of their former grandeur.

Having found Broadway busy and Sunbridge Wells bursting to the brim last Saturday afternoon, taking a walk across town to North Parade revealed a desert of neglect.

It also appears that the closure of Morrisons adjacent to the Oastler Market has left traders there feeling marooned and with a sense of abandonment.

The claim that “numerous” businesses have opened is also somewhat fanciful, in so doing describing a dozen or so bars and cafes, as welcome as they are. North Parade is a good addition to the city but it is too small to be anything but limited in effect.

Better days.

Around it lies a wasteland of boarded up buildings, many for far longer than Broadway has been in existence. Look up and you can still see their past grandeur which makes this even sadder; these are still truly beautiful buildings.

Even if our hopeless council managed to prize £2m from the Lottery as regular stooge Cllr Ross-Shaw alludes to, this would barely touch the sides. And for what? More bars, a few take-aways, charity shops and bookies?

Old and neglected but still beautiful – the Royal.

It really needs a serious – and radical – plan here yet nobody would bet our council having the ability to come up with one. Only this week came another article on the continuing decline of the Oastler Market, hastened since the closure of Morrisons.

Said a trader with over forty years in Bradford: “Over the years they have spent hundreds of thousands of pounds on feasibility studies…Bradford Breakthrough, Bradford’s Bouncing Back, 2020 Vision and the Alsop’s report. The Council is dysfunctional and completely incompetent.”

The city neither has the footfall nor the spending power to command the retail space it once did; that bit should be obvious to anybody other than the deluded.

No plan would be simple given the diverse ownership of properties. And yet surely it makes sense to flatten the vacant Morrisons, the Oastler and the partially closed multi-story (the council cannot afford the repairs) and consolidate the offering further downtown.

Create a cheap car-park to encourage people into town from the top end and the footfall for a market, wherever it is relocated – there are plenty of options. A start would be the numerous abandoned shops; low rent or no rent?

Above all, at least come up with a plan not endless pitiful sound-bites fed unashamedly to the local rag by a stool pigeon on expenses.

So sad for a city able to show off it’s status via such beautiful architecture all those years ago now led by those not fit to walk in the same shoes.

Welcome Back Old World

Nokia 3310

Wonderful news for those of us that still believe a phone is, well, a phone! The iconic Nokia 3310 is set for a UK comeback saving me from ever contemplating a life of swiping and an incurable addiction to Facebook and the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders website.

This so-called age of information is really though the age of idiocy. Take a look at this article from the New York Times.

We now know that those iPads, smartphones and Xboxes are a form of digital drug. Recent brain imaging research is showing that they affect the brain’s frontal cortex — which controls executive functioning, including impulse control — in exactly the same way that cocaine does.

Do you really think that Little Johnny having the latest iPhone is cool now? And if you wanted any more proof?

There’s a reason that the most tech-cautious parents are tech designers and engineers. Steve Jobs was a notoriously low-tech parent. Silicon Valley tech executives and engineers enroll their kids in no-tech Waldorf Schools. Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page went to no-tech Montessori Schools, as did Amazon creator Jeff Bezos and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.

I’ll stick to Nokia.

Dumb Britain

British Gas are currently advertising a new offer to pay them even more to heat your home. Hive Active – curiously named as it basically involves sitting on your over-heated arse with a smartphone – allows you to pay £9 a month just so you can adjust your heating via your phone.

Are we really that witless to pay £108 a year just for the odd occasion a radiator was left on?

Even more reasons for staying with my Nokia, aside from the health and financial benefits of off getting of my arse to turn the heating down…assuming I can move with all those sweaters on.

My Green And Pleasant Valley

Perfect spot to build a toxic industrial waste incinerator.

We may well live in the age of the petition but how else to make politicians sit up and notice? Take a look here and take a minute to register your thoughts at this madness.

From my research Endless Energy Ltd are located in Cheshire, were established in 2006 and don’t appear to be actually trading. So who would possibly be dopey enough to sanction the building of such a controversial facility; surely not Bradford Planning?

Picture a monstrosity the area of a football pitch and the height of eight double decker buses with a 60m chimney.

Savour the prospect of a plant able to release a cocktail of particulate matter, chemicals, metals, dioxins and furans – the most toxic chemical known to science. The major source of dioxins & furans in the environment come from burning waste!

Supporters claim that 500 jobs will be created – really? In reality a maximum of 80 staff may be required about as many as the new Lidl down the road.

You may think this far enough away to ignore; do so at your peril.

Targeted Marketing

Algorithms I think they call them? Anyway, Facebook has decided a need a free sample of the following. And with the Council closing public toilets for fun, maybe they are right?

Never get caught short!

Have a great weekend.

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