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Bonkers Blog June 2015

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14 June - Ramblings

CrossrailThere is very little going on. The old weekend standby of Crossrail has produced nothing. On both sides of the Eynsham Drive bridge a few men are fiddling around with the North Kent line track and to its east some more may be preparing a sound deadening fence. For that there are no trains again. The scheduled work was piling at the tunnel portal and the installation of ‘modules’ at Abbey Wood station, all of which has already been completed.

I have several times tried to get a good telephoto picture of the tunnel portal but the Church Manorway footbridge with its dirty windows and constant vibration which a tripod only amplifies has defeated every effort so far. Today the bad light made things worse and the photo shown is shockingly blurred. Maybe summer will eventually come.

The Murky Depths has some well justified criticism of the Church Manorway footbridge and not just because it is no good for photography. It is an eyesore and when the disabled access is opened it is going to provide a magnificent playground for the skateboaders and illegal motorbikers

For Bexley news you would be better off today taking a look at the Maggot Sandwich’s report on the the houses and six storey flats that are proposed by London & Quadrant for the old swimming pool site opposite Erith’s Riverside Gardens. Hugh Neal, the Maggot Man, is concerned that 71 dwellings will have only 46 parking spaces and that a dark underground garage area will be a crime magnet. Has nothing been learned since Tavy Bridge and The Clockwork Orange?

It’s always interesting to me to hear what one’s peers think of this website. In connection with last week’s blog about the Bin Tax, Hugh says that “Malcolm’s Bexley is Bonkers has taken up this issue, as it sits closely with his mission to expose the ways in which the council fail to deliver on their promises”. I suppose that he is right and exposing whatever Bexley council would prefer to be hidden is largely what BiB is all about, a Mission if you like. However it’s a different M word that keeps it alive most days. Motive. And that is to teach the blighters over time that the days when a council can abuse the public without fear of retribution are long gone.

It is possible there has been some progress. It is four years since council leader Teresa O’Neill regarded writing this blog as worthy of arrest and the police jumped at her command.
Harassment

Police statement. Council leader Teresa O'Neill reported me to the police for “criticising councillors”. The warning threatened arrest if Bexley is Bonkers continued.

It is three years since councillor Peter Craske was arrested for Misconduct in Public Office and it is two years since councillor Cheryl Bacon and her cronies lied on a massive scale and encouraged a dishonest Press Release to tarnish the reputations of several residents. Cheryl Bacon, Will Tuckley the Chief Executive, and Lynn Tyler the Legal Team Manager remain under continuing police investigation for their pains. I doubt the three of them will be so obviously dishonest in future.

Since then there has been nothing on a similar scale although if, no, make that when, the carry on in the parking department goes public you may think BiB’s constant drip, drip, drip of revelations is having no effect after all. But what else can one do? Nothing is not an option.

It’s perhaps a bit premature as a story but I Googled ‘Boundary Commission single member wards’ and found they are more common than I would have imagined. Some councils have even asked for them.

Not Bexley of course where the Tories threw out the Labour Group’s suggestion that 42 councillors would be a suitable number. One might assume they would have liked rather more, you can be absolutely sure they were not prepared to see a cut twice as large as Labour proposed. Now it seems they are having to fight a rearguard action to save their allowances from a determined Boundaries Commission which appears to believe that 21 councillors is plenty.

Will they side with Labour and strive for a reduction of 21 councillors to 42? Will the Labour Group make mischief by looking sympathetically at the BC’s proposal? The grapevine says neither. The Tories can’t be seen as going along with Labour’s 42 so the preferred number will have to be higher. A consensus appears to be forming around the next best thing; 45. We shall see, but not quickly or clearly while Bexley’s renowned official secrecy is maintained. Thank goodness for gossips from all parties.

 

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