Thanet Star

Non-Party Conservative?

I have been thinking about this for a while now - one of the candidates for the Conservative Party in Dane Valley is a lady by the name of Wendy Allan.

Those with a very good memory may recall that Wendy Allan stood as an intendant candidate in the Dane Valley by-election. I remember at the time that I was pleased to see an intendant standing in the area. Wendy's literature proclaimed "The political parties are all just as bad as each other".

Wendy told us "Just say no to party politicians" After all, she argued "we don't want another gagged and stifled voice to represent us". We were advised to "break away from old voting habits and resist party politics at local level" in order to "put your community first".

Wendy told us of Labour neglect and "monumental failure" and slighted the Conservative council member Stephen Broadhurst for his failings leading to his resignation.

What I would love to ask Wendy now is how she has come to have such a huge change of heart? How come she is now standing as a Conservative Candidate just a year and a half later?

At the end of 2009 Wendy claimed to be anti-Tory and anti-Labour. Wendy asked us "Can you trust them not to put their political party before you?" Wendy assured us that she was "...fighting to serve you and not a political party."

Yet now I cannot help but feel misled, disappointed, deceived...

What does this sort of turn around do for credibility?

...

» Continue Reading: Non-Party Conservative?

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Kitty politics

Is your Cat confused about the referendum on the voting system on the 5th May?

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Arlington House

Back in 2008 I discussed Bob Geldof's comments about Thanet an the general idea that Arlington House was not so easy on the eyes. Now that it looks like it may become a Tesco with all the traffic problems that might create but with the improvement to how the building looks we're still not happy.

There is just no pleasing some people...

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Noah's new ark

It seems that Noah's Ark is to be found in Dane Valley, Thanet.

Okay so perhaps that is a bit of exaggeration. Last week a gorgeous tabby tom cat showed up at my door and decided it lived here. this week a small Hamster was delivered equally as unexpectedly and suddenly.

I have a whole new appreciation for how Noah would have felt when the animals started showing up.

When one tells The Almighty* that one's children desire pets and invite Him to comment do please expect to be the adult tasked with caring for them.

*Yes I am the sort of person who fully believes that God listens to us, it's listening to Him that is usually the hard part. This time I think the message is clearly: Alrighty then, Matthew, look after this lot.

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Windmill Community Allotment Open Day

Saturday 7th May 11am to 3pm Windmill Community Allotment are holding an Open Day.

Activities are to include face painting, a magic show and wildlife activities with Kent Wildlife Trust. Refreshments will be available and you will be able to purchase fresh fruit and veg grown on the allotment.

The allotment is on the corner of Dane Valley Road and Millmead Road.

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Cats and code

I'm about to apply some updates with a cat on my lap. Hopefully no-one should notice anything except me noticing that a sleeping cat can give on a dead arm...

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Fixed and improved.

Along with the improvements to the road surfaces that I triggered I can also happily report that a certain road sign has also been repaired.

Now if I can get some attention to the rather deadly corner as well I shall be most pleased.

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Greetings Mr Cat, what should we call you then?

Yesterday a young tom cat spent the entire day being most insistent about coming into my home. In the end I relented and now I appear to have a new tenant.

He's a very cute cat but I'm sure he must be missed somewhere. He's not been chipped and had no tag so I had little choice but to take him home again.

If no one comes forward to claim him then I imagine that this puss will stay in the home he has chosen for himself. I suppose I should come up with a name for him.

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Ramsgate Harbour gets new breakwater

Ramsgates Royal Harbour is scheduled to receive 930,000 of work.

The project, which will help protect the Harbours Eastern Outer Marina will also provide finger pontoons which will be able to take up to 28 vessels. The pontoons will mainly be used for vessels serving the windfarm projects

The scheme will see the existing breakwater in the outer harbour being replaced. The eleven units that currently make up the existing breakwater will be used for the finger pontoons once the new breakwater is in place. The breakwater is, as you might imagine, a key part of the harbour, helping to absorb the energy from waves and to protect the boats moored in the Eastern Outer Marina.

The work is being funded by the council with some money coming from a European Interreg programme called PATCH (Ports Adapting to Change) although how much each are contributing is unknown to me at this time. I assume that the improvements will in the long term add value and longevity to the harbour. The aim is to diversify port operations by developing new maritime activities and markets and help strengthen cross-border cooperation and efficiency between the ports.

According to the press release each of the nine new concrete floating breakwater units weigh around 42 tons. They have had to be brought into the harbour piece by piece and will now be linked together and permanently moored on piles that have been driven though the silt bed of the harbour and into the chalk beneath.

Harbourmaster Robert Brown said: This work will stand the marina in good stead for the future, ensuring that we have adequate protection for everyone who uses it. It will also provide a new home for the boats that will be working on the London Array windfarm over the next couple of years, which will help to bring additional income into the harbour.

The work is expected to be completed by the end of April just in time for the elections at the start of May.

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The good things TDC have done

There are a few people that say that Thanet Star is a little too negative these days. Yet as readers know I am very keen on balance. So this post is all about the success that Thanet District Council have had of late.

The good things they have done.

1. TDC have made a plan to re-open the M&S building and get it back in commercial use. This is good if only because Margate High Street needs all the open shops it can get.

2. TDC, I understand, are behind a push to do work on the sea defences in Margate. (Better late than never).

3. TDC fund Lark in the Park and the Big Event (whatever shape it takes this year).

4. TDC manage to keep us from drowning in rubbish. They might get little praise for their efforts but without them doing that we'd have a huge litter problem.

5. TDC, as I understand it, subsidise the bus service which expensive though it is would be more expensive without that support.

What good things has TDC done that you are particularly pleased with?

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The league table of our councillors

Regular readers are probably aware that I am a big fan of facts and figures. You will also be aware that I like to report findings regardingt he council. Combining these two things into one bundle allowed me to research and create a league table of our councillors.

View it in it's raw format here

The table orders councillors according to how hard they work and this is measured by how many meetings they showed up to. However I am aware that there are lots of other measures of the quality of a councillor but the measurements are not available to me as numbers at this time.

This is a fasinating snap shot of who the hard workers are and who the slackers are. Summary from this table to follow in easy to understand format.

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Deadly roads

Late last year a car crash almost cost the life of my sister's (then) unborn baby. The damage might not look the most dramatic you've ever seen but the car was scap metal and my sister taken into hospital. My mum and another of my sisters were left badly shaken up but otherwise safe.

The cause of this crash?

The junction of Tenterden Way and Millmead Road. It is frankly one of the worst palces to try to manage a right hand turn from as by the time you can see on coming traffic to your right you are fully committed to the turn.

I am currently attempting to get the corner made safe before someone is killed.

What happened to my mum's car

Yes the wheel is bent at a funny angle. No the car could not be driven.

This wheel is broken

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Roads

When I complained to KCC about the potholes in the roads near to where I live I expected that they would send someone out to fill them (which they did most promptly). What I didn't expect is that they would come back and reserfice all the roads.

I think we can call that one an added success.

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Time for the satire?

One of the things I am really looking forward to is the satire in which I expect to feature over the next year. After all I've sided with a political party; I'm standing for TDC; I run a number of blogs some of which are now funded by dontations; and, very important here, I'm a funny looking chap with a big hat and facial hair.

Not to mention that I am mildly dyslexic and prone to making spelling mistakes.

The material for a skillful satirist is almost endless. It's a shame Birty and ECR are no longer active.

Being funny is hard work - is anyone up to the task?

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BIGNEWS MARGATE: Liberal Democrat candidates for Dane Valley

Everything I'd like to say today on the subject of the voting this year in Dane Valley has been said very well already by Tony of Big News Margate.

BIGNEWS MARGATE: Liberal Democrat candidates for Dane Valley

I can't tell you how good it feels to have been asked to stand as a candidate for the Liberal Democrats in the May local council elections for the Dane Valley ward. I will be joining Bill Furness local Liberal Democrat campaigner, and Matt Brown, a fellow commentator on local matters.

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Upgrade in progress.

After all the fuss that happened because a fractionally out of date part of the server was comprimised it seems like a silly thing not to bring the blog software bang up to date. So I am about to do this for Thanet Star.

What should change?

Very little should change however this update improves the IsValidEmail() function which Peter will be pleased about as the current version is rude to him nine times out of ten.

I might, in the forthcoming year, roll out some tiny new features as I test what the brains at NucleusCMS have come up with. Generally these guys are amazing developers and the community is fantastic.

Other than that there might be a few minutes of outages but as most of you should be sleeping in your beds no one should notice.

update: all done but I seem to ahve done something nasty to the comment system. Trying to fix that now.

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Margate: the ghost town on the isle of concrete

Not so very long ago Bill Furness, of North Thanet Liberal Democrats fame, wrote for kentnews.co.uk a blog post where titled Margate: the ghost town on the isle of concrete. Is that a fair assesment of Margate?

Kent News :: Article :: Margate: the ghost town on the isle of concrete

By Bill Furness, of North Thanet Liberal DemocratsMargate was unkindly labelled Britains top ghost town recently by the national press.

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We're back!

Sorry about that folks. We seem to have spent most of the week end off line. The reason in short is sum oik managed to lob a canned exploit onto the server before I could apply the latest security fix and we had to go offline to clean up. I took the time to tidy up a few bits and hopefully things will run faster now too.

It rather spoiled the April fools joke and made my week-end long and interesting but we are back and as good as ever (or better).

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Simon and Matt kiss and make up

Yes, it's true folks Simon and I are now best friends.

After a long and frank talk we have decided to become lovers. He's taking me out to dinner this evening. All's well that ends well.

Simon Moores and Matt sitting in a tree...

...

» Continue Reading: Simon and Matt kiss and make up

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Like to write?

If you love to write then the Thanet Creative Writers blog might be the ideal place to connect with your nearest writer group.

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Hyper-localism

For those interested in blogging local news in and arround the UK this BBC article from last year is sure to be of interest.

General
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Did you know?

Margate was the first seaside resort to introduce deck chairs way back in 1898.

Facts
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Did you know

MP Roger Gail (Thanet North) wanted to increase VAT

Facts
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Did you know

MP Roger Gale (Thanet North) has never voted on measures to reduce tax avoidance

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Too popular

On Wednesday 28th May the article The staggering truth about Gloag's Manston deal was so popular that it was briefly unreachable as the server could not supply pages fast enough.

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