Saturday, 17 July 2010

Blogs and stuff

I have just noticed that the counter that I put on this blog about two years ago has passed the 100,000 mark, so a thank you to all of you who have put up with my ramblings.

Here follows a fast touch-typed rant during lunchtime in the bookshop, that will be in need of correction if I ever get around to it, very much thought as I go along tha something really intended for publication.

Looking at the various posts here and on the other blogs, one is very much aware of a sense of dissatisfaction with Thanet District Council, particularly over asset disposal and leisure facilities.

I am not really sure how much of this is real and how much of it is perceived and talking to people in the shop it is obvious that this feeling extends outside of the blogs and is almost universal.

I think much of the problem stems from poor communication with local people and frankly whith the internet this really shouldn’t be happening, the council has a whole press department that is supposed to tell us what they are up to.

Frankly it shouldn’t be difficult to extract the major things that are likely to effect peoples lives, from the masses of information the council publish, and publish information about these somewhere on the internet.

My last posting is a case in point, the planning application to decimate Hartsdown Park in Margate was hidden in plain view on the internet, published among the masses of planning applications for double glazing, shop signs and so on and I missed it.

The business over putting Westcliff hall into a residential property auction see ECRs post is another case of dreadful communication and bad pr, I asked Ramsgate Town Council about this yesterday and I know that they have been involved in the plans by local people to rejuvenate this.

The sad truth here is that Ramsgate Town Council hadn’t been told about putting it into this auction by Thanet district Council, so if they can’t be bothered to tell the town council what hope do local residents hope to have of finding out what is going on their town.

Another one is the Margate Caves site see my post about it something else that I hope Margate people will take up, however I am not sure that what looks like impossible access to what should be an important tourist attraction, would be grounds for objecting to the planning application.

The development on the slipways in Ramsgate is another one see although it is being talked about in Ramsgate as a done deal already, I can’t find anything about it on the council’s planning website. Once again the problem here isn’t likely to be something that would be somthing to object to it on planning grounds, nonetheless the question, will the harbour be viable with only one slipway? Is a vital one to the economy of Ramsgate as a town.

There is quite a bit of comment on the two posts about Manston airport see and and once again I find there is very much a sense of the council not taking local people with them.

It is quite ridiculous for people to suggest that the noise issue in Ramsgate is a new one, over fifty years ago the problem was such that the American air force decided that Ramsgate was only suitable coloured troops, who at the time they considered racially inferior or some such thing, possibly deaf. All of the officers were billeted in Margate away from the aircraft noise see

Perhaps the council are suggesting that Ramsgate people are racially inferior now, or possibly deafer than those in Margate, how it can be down to a council governing Ramsgate from what always has been and always will be our main rival town can decide fairly that Ramsgate should or shouldn’t have night flights passing over it is beyond me.

The question being asked here to our council dominated by cabinet members and Conservative members on the north of the island is; your biggest problem is Margate a large town with a leisure and shopping based economy that has collapsed, the main rival town Ramsgate appears to be regenerating from within, will you allow disruptive night flights over it?

Always for me though the airport issue comes down to our water supply and there are two aspects that won’t go away.

One is replenishment of the aquifer, by this I mean that amount of Thanet that can be concreted over is finite if we want to retain our essential water supply, this water supply has already been severely effected by various major pollution incidents and the low level but widespread pollution caused by the high level of population and associated infrastructure above.

The remaining mostly green bit of Thanet has Thanet Earth, with plans for expansion, China Gateway and the business park all with plans for more concrete and roads, the new road from Ramsgate to the main London road and the airport expansion.

The problem here is that you can have some of these things but you can’t have all of them and still have enough of a water supply for our domestic, industrial and agricultural needs.

The other problem is that over the commercial life of the airport there has been a lax attitude to water pollution safety issues, there is some information about this on this website I put up the last time I looked into the water pollution issue, see if people consider that there isn’t enough information here I do have some more I could publish too.

Truth is that I don’t want to scupper aspects of the airport that could be commercially beneficial to Thanet but on the other hand I don’t want us to go down the road to something that makes neither environmental nor economic sense.

One thing I find worrying here is that it is obvious that the airport has a long history of a lax attitude to safety in terms of water pollution and any airport with a lax attitude to safety in any area is a matter for concern.

Anyway is suppose I had better go and do some work now.

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