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Bonkers Blog September 2013

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30 September (Part 1) - Passing the time

Nurse GossThere is no shortage of blog material right now but stuff put on line on the last day of the month is destined to be tomorrow’s electronic chip paper, so it is best to sit on it today and scratch around for fillers.

Bexley’s magazine is out even if it has not hit your door mat yet. Don’t you think it is a bit thoughtless to put an image of a South London Health Care security pass on the front cover? Just as well that SLHC hits the buffers at midnight tonight.

The Bexley magazine occasionally shows signs of becoming a propaganda rag with news given a political slant but it could be worse. It’s not yet evolved into Greenwich Time.

Teresa O’Neill adorns Page 3 lauding the downgrading of Queen Mary’s Hospital to its ’health campus’ status and “thanks everyone who supported our plan to save Queen Mary’s”. There are two whole pages devoted to it further on. I have the impression that in some respects the reorganised hospital is set up to do what I used to expect a GP to do but now that it is next to impossible to get an appointment within a reasonable timescale the health service is providing one big and well equipped doctor’s surgery in the middle of town - except that Sidcup is as close to the edge of town as it is possible to get. My experience of GP services may not be unique, a number of councillors were saying similar things at last week’s Health Committee meeting.

Page 4 of the Bexley magazine pictures the Magic Roundabout under the heading “A huge improvement” and the comment “A number of people have declared themselves impressed by the changes”. It does of course look better but it may not be as cyclist and pedestrian friendly as people hoped. Page 14 sings the praises of the changes made in Welling which “is being transformed”. Not into a death trap one must hope.

Finally and inevitably the council leader uses the magazine to claim credit for Little Waitrose coming to Sidcup which also got a mention in last week’s News Shopper - for poor parking arrangements.

Nicholas Dowling has shown that all that is needed to get your name into a newspaper is a dud sound recorder and assistance from a headless chicken, for Nick has been featured in the Bexley Times for six of the last eight issues. In the current issue his image is alongside a letter from Bexley resident Richard Shone who says…

Bexley TimesI believe the council has made the decision to record and webcast the meetings professionally for two reasons: to maintain editing rights on the material so that anything they don’t want council taxpayers to know can be quietly removed; and by making the proposed recording methods so expensive that objections to the cost will be raised and they won’t have to allow the recordings at all.

Pedantry compels me to note that Bexley council has not yet made that decision and the precise recommendations to council will not be revealed until November. Some sort of double-cross is not impossible and maybe, just this once, there will not be unanimity in the Conservative ranks. I can only agree with Richard when he says “the council are very good at wasting taxpayers’ money” and “members of the public recording the proceedings the cost would be zero”. Whoever does it, you can be sure the viewing numbers will be very close to zero.


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