Thursday, May 28, 2009

Tory Attack Dog says protester was pretending to be blind...

Astonishing attack on one of the most respected charities in the country from a Tory council who claims that a protester carrying a white stick and wearing shades was pretending to be blind...

Guide Dogs for the Blind are incensed by the attack.

The Deputy Leader of Kensington and Chelsea who claims the protest was a scam would surely not make such a bizarre claim without the evidence to back it up.

Or is he just barking...?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Cameron's flip-flop on fixed-term parliaments...

David Cameron managed to call for an immediate general election - and fixed term parliaments - all in the same speech today!

But Paul Waugh of the London Standard quickly spotted what can only be described as a Cameron flip-flop.

As well as pointing out that David Cameron's deputy William Hague is less than convinced about fixed-term parliaments, he recalls a senior Tory speaking of the real drawbacks of fixed-term parliaments...

So who was warning against the idea when interviewed a few months ago by Andrew Marr?

Er, step forward David Cameron!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Now Quentin's in the frame over expenses...

Stamford MP Quentin Davies has become the second Lincolnshire MP facing questions over his parliamentary expenses after apparently claiming more than £10,000 for window repairs at his "second home", an 18th Century Manor House here in Lincolnshire.

It follows revelations about Douglas Hogg's claims for moat-cleaning at public expense at his "second home" - a 13th Century country pile also in Lincolnshire.

Earlier this week, on the day there were further revelations about claims by his wife, "Lady" Hogg, the Sleaford MP announced he will step down at the next General Election.

Both Mr Hogg and Mr Davies apparently claimed that their "first home" was a London flat...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Moat man and his 'Lady' keep it in the family...

The unfortunately named Douglas Hogg, the Lincolnshire MP apparently caught with his snout in the trough has announced he will step down at the next General Election.

So-called Grandee Mr Hogg is MP for Sleaford and North Hykeham where I grew up. When the scandal was first exposed, former Agriculture Minister Mr Hogg, or Viscount Hailsham to give him his proper title, claimed he'd done nothing wrong and refused to pay back a penny of his outrageous claim for £2,000 to clean the moat at his 13th Century country estate in Lincolnshire.

Today, several days later, the Right Honourable member Mr Hogg says he now entirely understands the public anger over disgraceful excesses in expense claims allegedly made by MPs of all parties - including Labour.

Mr Hogg claimed his main residence wasn't his country pile in Lincolnshire at all - but a flat in London. He then apparently claimed £20,000 a year in public funds to clean his moat, repair the stables, tune the piano and employ a lady to look after his second home in Lincolnshire.

Presumably the lady looking after the family home is not Lady Hogg, his wife, who is facing an under investigation investigation herself, it was revealed today.

The so-called Lady Hogg is said to have attempted to justified a claim for £5,594 overnight expenses by saying her main home was, unlike her husband's...OUTSIDE London!

What a stench.

Must the manure.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Upside down justice...?

A Deepings teenager who fractured a man's skull and left him permanently deaf in one ear in a vicious unprovoked attack has escaped going to prison.

It seems the Judge accepted that the 19-year-old lad from Thackers Way acted 'out of character' after a row with his girlfriend by attacking the 45-year-old man.

Apparently, he's an achiever who wants to go to University and has a great future ahead of him.

That's the teenager, you understand, not the victim.

UPDATE: So, no prison for causing long term suffering to a man. In contrast, in another court case, a Lincolnshire has - no doubt quite rightly - been given a jail sentence for causing a dog.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

First female top gun is a yellow-belly...

Good to see that the first female jet pilot to join the Red Arrows in their 44-year history hails from our great land of Lincolnshire, home of the Royal Air Force.

Not sure exactly where in our county Flt. Lt. Kirsty Moore calls home, but I'm sure she's proud to be a Yellow Belly!

SKDC keeps up their wall of silence...

Just received South Kesteven District Council's reply to my Freedom of Information request about the costs of the sudden mysterious departure of their Chief Exec who quit and cleared his desk on the same day...

I asked if reports in the Grantham Journal were true that Duncan Kerr had walked (or cycled) away with a year's salary for doing nothing. At £2,000 a week, that adds up to well over £100,000 - from a council that says it can't afford to allow local pensioners to use their bus passes before 9.30am.

The legal language in SKDC's reply can be summed up in a sentence:

How we spend your money is nothing to do with you.
So much for Freedom of Information!

Why I'm not standing...

I've cocked-up bigtime. I had intended to defend my seat at Lincolnshire County Council in the local elections next month.

But due to a simple mix-up, I didn't make the deadline to get correctly completed nomination forms delivered to SKDC's offices in Grantham. The mix-up was entirely my fault, and I apologise to everyone who has supported me.

It's no consolation that I wasn't the only one to get it so wrong. At least one other would-be candidate - who shall remain nameless - from another party - was turned away a few minutes before the deadline because three of those who had signed his forms nominating him were not resident in the ward in which he wanted to stand.

No complaints of course. The deadline is a legal requirement and I missed it!

So my eight years serving as county councillor for Deeping St James end in three weeks time. It's been a real privilege to have been given the opportunity to represent my local community on Lincolnshire County Council and Lincolnshire Police Authority.

On June 4th, DSJ people have a choice between a local Green candidate, a local LibDem candidate and a Tory district councillor who lives in Stamford.

I trust local people will support the candidate most likely to stand up for the needs of DSJ people as I have tried to do for the past eight years.

I look forward to continuing to serve my community in other roles - tonight, for example as a trustee on United Charities, helping to distribute funds to those most in need.

Tomorrow night, it's the annual meeting of the parish council where I'll be presenting awards to people who make a difference to our community.

I won't stop campaigning on local issues - such as achieving a permanent home for Deepings Rugby Club, and supporting home grown, value-for-money recycling.

And of course, I won't stop the campaign I started almost ten years ago - fighting for bus pass justice for Deepings pensioners from South Kesteven District Council.