Thanet Star

I have a new bully

I want to explain why I was so loathed to remove a few dozen middling posts from the archives.

A person (I think you might be able to work out who) has taken upon himself to lead a one-man campaign of disinformation about me. I do not think this fellow is politically motivated and I do not think his actions are financial. My best guess is he is just super into being nasty or something.

I have, until now, been trying to ignore him. I have ignored rude emails, blocked him Facebook, blocked fake accounts on Facebook, blocked him on Reddit, silently ignored public blog posts*, said nothing about misinformation on his website, and have not reacted to vague (and incorrect) legal threats by physical post. In other words, I have a bully with all the playground level behaviour that goes with such a creature. Not nice.

* Actually that one is not 100% true. His post complained about hurtful and incorrect postings by both myself and people I run events with. So I made him a series of nicely formatted forms to report said posts because I had no idea what he was talking about. I sent him a link and invited him to specify what was wrong and offered to help. He refused to engage with me. So now I rather fancy this content he objects to does not exist.

Last year, he was writing posts for Thanet star so that I could focus on another project we were working on together (his website). Then a few weeks ago I started getting really aggressive emails claiming copyright violations and threatening legal action.

I ignored the emails and they stopped.

Then my ISP, the nice people who host this site, emailed me saying their legal department had been getting strongly worded complaints. That was when I posted up a request for feedback. It was not that I could not or would not remove the posts but that I did not in any way want to give in to bullying. Given the choice between redacting some posts and going offline I (very sarcastically) redacted them.

As ignoring my bully in the hope that he will go away as not worked, I can only try talking about it in the hope that he will go away.

You know me. I put up with a lot of crap to run this blog. The current (and dare I say, useless) leader of the council has spent a lot of time shouting about how much of a Labour shill I am and I laughed it off (because he was wrong). I stood up to the aggression of local blogging and while that means we have fewer comments here the usual angry (wanting to fight) comments are not found here. I put up with a lot of threats (from Tories) when I exposed how much the TDC chief exec was getting as a golden handshake (and I was right too).

This, however, is a whole other ball-game. This is not a political or ideological disagreement. This is not a debate over houses vs trees or left vs right this is just mean. While we accuse the worst of our council members of bending the truth we have never dealt with one who works purely in lies and character assassinations.

I am only human and I have no doubt that on reflection, years from now, I will see that there are situations I could have handled better. I doubt I am without flaws. Even so, I have to admit that I am simply not coping with this bully situation.

Both my bully and I are, or so he claims, working for the betterment of the same local literary scene and that scene does not need this crap. No one wants this.

All that is happening is my bully is damaging any good work either of us might have done or might do. There are no winners here. Nothing good will come of it.

I've tried reaching out to the trustees of the charity he established and will continue to try and reach out to them but so far they have ignored me.

HF, LM, DC, and anyone else who knows who exactly I am talking about. Please have a word with our mutual acquaintance and ask him to stop his campaign of hate. Please do it, not for me, but for the good of the writers of Thanet.

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Guide To Holiday Bus Services In Thanet

Christmas is here! We at Thanet Star have your transportation concerns covered. The holiday season means that buses will not be operating as they normally would. It can be a little overwhelming and you don't need the hassle, so we have done the research so you don't have to.

On the surrounding dates – December 22nd, 23rd, 27th-30th, and January 2nd and 3rd – the services will be running on Sunday Service times, so check your local timetable's Sunday section for details.

However, on Christmas Day, New Years Day, and the "Eves" of both there are drastic changes that you should make sure you are aware of if you are planning on doing any travelling around Thanet or the surrounding areas via public transport.

For Christmas Day there are no buses at all, unfortunately, but hopefully everyone is too busy cosying up indoors with their friends and family to worry about that. There are also no buses on New Year's Day.

For Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve the "Last Buses" are as follows:

  • The Loop
    • Margate to Ramsgate
      • via Newington Road at 20:45
      • via Derby Arms / The Viaduct at 21:00
      • via Broadstairs at 20:50
    • Margate to Westwood at 21:15
    • Ramsgate to Margate
      • Via Newington Road at 20:35
      • Via Broadstairs at 20:43
      • Via Derby Arms / The Viaduct at 20:50
    • Ramsgate to Westwood at 21:20<
  • The Breeze (routes 8/8X)
    • Margate to Canterbury at 19:45
    • Canterbury to Margate at 20:40
    • Margate to Birchington at 20:23
    • Birchington to Canterbury at 21:09

Boxing Day – December 26th – has a very special timetable for The Loop which can be downloaded from the Stagecoach website, here.

You can pay for your tickets on the bus, or use the brand-new "Stagecoach Bus App" to purchase in advance and show the driver(s) when you get on-board their bus. The App is available for iOS and Android.  The "app" also gives up-to-date service information.

If you require more information, there is a "Customer Service & Disability Helpdesk" phone number that operates from Monday to Saturday from 07:30 until 18:00, but this will be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day, Tuesday 27th of December, New Year's Day and Monday January 2nd. On Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve it will be closed at the earlier time of 14:30. The number is 03456 00 22 99. You can also "Tweet" them at @StagecoachSE and email to southeast.enquiries@stagecoachbus.co.uk.

From everyone here at Thanet Star, "Happy Holidays!", remember to make alternative arrangements with taxis or friends if the buses are not running when you need them to be, and above all else, have fun, but stay safe!

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Thanet's Divide

I'm sure that you're aware of the divide in Thanet - the geological divide, that is.

Margate: The place you don't want to walk alone at night.

Broadstairs: The place that you could leave your door open all night with a sign outside that says "I have millions in gold sitting in my lounge" and be safe.

Ramsgate: The one in between. Be wary but you're probably okay.

At least, that's what image they have. For the longest time, I've argued the toss that these opinions aren't accurate. Margate has its problems but it's not as bad as it's made out to be. Broadstairs isn't as great as it is believed to be. That's actually pretty true about Ramsgate, to be fair.

I recently saw crime stats for Thanet that did nothing but reinforce these notions. Kent police published the number of call outs specific streets had for violent and sexual assaults so far this year. Broadstairs had a grand total of one street with other 10 call outs. Ramsgate had 5 with the highest being 25 and an average of 14.6 callouts.

To put all of those into perspective, across the 5 Ramsgate streets there were a grand total of 73 calls. Northdown Road had 75 alone. Margate had 37 streets with over 10 call outs.

You can see the full details here and have a look to see if your street is on the list.

There's clearly a divide that does exist. There's even a life expectancy difference between the towns. If you live in Cliftonville West you're expected to live a couple of years less than if you live in outside the ward.

Why is there this divide? I don't have the answer, unfortunately, but there are numerous social-economical differences between the areas and that isn't helping. It's been well established now that poverty causes a lot of problems in the area, especially when the entire area is impoverished. Recently, Thanet Star's editor published an article over on Lord Matt calling on Thanet's people to start on the path to end the poverty in the area. Head over and have a look. It's not going to solve all of our problems, but if we can make a start, lessen the divide between the areas and unleash the potential in this isle that we call home, isn't that our duty?

David Chitty is a Thanet local who spends far too much time tending to his beard. He can be found on davidchitty.com or on Facebook.
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The Devil's Dilemma

The original content of this post has been removed because the author was a #WhinyLittleBitch with all the maturity of a mayfly and all the depth of a shoe print on dry mud.

Honestly, would a polite email have really hurt you that badly?

This notice exists because Matt is too sarcastic for his own good and is not always so mature either.

This notice replaced the previous content automatically using a search and replace query directly in the SQL engine. If the mayfly in question has any further complaints he can stick them where the sun shines not.

Or he can try and sue me but he will lose.

Come at me bro.

Seb Reilly absolutely insists all his guest posts for Thanet Star are a product of our imagination. We don't like bullies and have removed all trace of his "contributions"

...

» Continue Reading: The Devil's Dilemma

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The Windmill Community Gardens.

I would like to think that most people would be against the mass use of chemicals that we use on fresh food these days.

It's been well established now that it has had a negative effect on our environment. The soil that we need to grow our food is degrading, this is resulting in more chemicals being pumped into the ground to counter this. The cycle repeats until we all start having to eat dust. There are other impacts, but, essentially if we keep farming the way that we are then we're pretty much screwed. So, how do we stop this?

Don't buy it. You don't buy something, the people will stop making it. I know all too well the argument of price, however, when it comes to buying organic or chemical free products. It's an argument that I myself use. I buy food that's laced with so many chemicals that I'm surprised my food doesn't glow. If organic food cost the same as non-organic food, I'd buy organic. But it can't cost the same; more work has gone into getting that chemical free product to your shopping trolley than its chemical counterpart. More work means more money.

What can we all do then? A little bit does go a long way. The majority of the fresh produce that I buy is not organic. But I do buy some that's chemical free. There's a great little place in Dane Valley called the Windmill Community Gardens. They run a great selection of activities but, I'm sure you've guessed where I'm going with this, they also sell chemical free produce.

Every Tuesday the Garden has a market stall between 12 and 4pm at their site on the corner of Dane Valley and College Road. On the stall, you'll be able to buy locally grown, seasonal fruit and veg and it's all chemical free. And it opens its door again this week - 17th May 2016 in case you're reading this in the future - The products they sell on the stall are beautiful.

I know it's cliche to say that they taste better, but they really do. They also have a weekly veg box scheme that delivers a bag of veg to a multitude of different locations around Thanet for as little as 6 pound a week. What have you got to lose?

Windmill Community Gardens truly is a Thanet Star...

David Chitty is a Thanet local who spends far too much time tending to his beard. He can be found on davidchitty.com or on Facebook.
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Margate was the first seaside resort to introduce deck chairs way back in 1898.

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