Category: Politics

Gentrification – The Sourdough Index

I went to buy some bread from a baker’s shop in a smart part of town the other day.

When I asked for a small “Wholemeal”, I was told that there were none there. In fact it was a not a case of running out, but they did not sell wholemeal loaves at all. The nearest they had to that was a “mixed grain sourdough loaf”.  One of three types of sourdough bread they stocked in the shop. It looked lovely stuff in there too.

Nevertheless I was a bit taken aback. Is this the price of gentrification?

Added to this if I know the looks I would get if I asked for sourdough bread in my local bakers.


World Refugee Day

Today I read that it was World Refugee Day. Thanks to The Guardian newspaper for printing a hard copy of the List. This is a list of 34,361 people who have died trying to reach Europe since 1993.

This List is cold, harsh and to the point.

A hard copy was given away as part of a supplement with today’s (20 June 2018) print edition of the Guardian. I only came across it as a scrabbled around for the sport section of the newspaper.

It makes sobering reading.

You can download a pdf copy of the list here.


Classic one liners……7

Dennis Skinner was at it  yet again today. Unfortunately the State Opening of Parliament clashes with Day 2 of the Royal Ascot Race meeting and it is no secret as to where the Queen would rather be.  It is a perfect opportunity for Dennis to just do what he does best.

Even in what was a shortened ceremony Black Rod still came knocking on the door of the House of Commons to summon MPs through to the so called Upper Chamber in order to hear the Queen’s Speech. This is the way things work in our Parliamentary Democracy. The Queen sits in the House of Lords and tells someone to fetch the Commoners to hear what she has to say.

Not for the first time and hopefully not the last Dennis Skinner delivered yet another classic one liner.

Maybe we will not have to wait 2 years to hear the next one.




Even at the start of the clip you can see the thumbs up greeting from the MP for Bolsover to the man sent down from the Lords, so we could all see it coming.


Nimbies in Chelsea Tractors

It seems that the HS2 development is causing greater agitation among the locals the closer it gets to the time that it really does get built.

As the tension rises people get more desperate. One outcome of this is that I somehow got put on an anti HS2 mailing list by a well meaning soul who lives locally. A mail-shot came my way that had a form letter attached to it. This letter was intended for people to complain through a public consultation exercise to the Government about HS2. The original sender urged me to forward the email on to others as they had done and as a consequence it had become a glorified chain letter.

I ignored this initial email, but when I received it again from some random person who had hit the “reply all” button I was shaken into action. The letter was copied as requested, but edited somewhat in order to reflect my own personal views and I hope that some of the suits in Whitehall read this:

Dear Prime Minister aka “Posh Boy” and Secretary of State for Transport

HS2:(London-West Midlands) Property & Compensation Consultation Response
Short-sighted folks around here are whining about HS2. There is no blight which is severely disrupting people’s lives in Great Missenden – I recently got my house valued and it has increased in its worth over the past 18 months. The people around here who are concerned about HS2, put up signs against a development that will benefit the whole of the UK. These billboards stuck at the end of private roads and well manicured driveways are a blot on the landscape and create a feeling of negativity that does not serve any common good and instead creates a poor public image of the Chilterns.
My two next door neighbours are some of the most vulnerable members of the community and they are subjected to a noisy and dangerous drive-by twice every school day by a stream of 4x4s with “no to HS2” stickers stuck on their back windows. That is a local transport issue that needs action, not a public transport improvement that will benefit so many people. The same folk who steam past our front doors, at high speeds too, in their gas guzzlers are happy to jump on the Skitrain or go for a jaunt in Paris via Eurostar. Yet these same people had and still have no regard for any impact that the Eurostar link has in Kent for example. What is good for the goose……These same people even send me junk texts and emails urging me to write to you, so I have.
Get HS2 built please and don’t worry about if the Government can afford it. If we can’t afford HS2 then tax the rich folk and close the loopholes that their accountants use to lower what they should be paying to the Inland Revenue in the first place.I believe that the current compensation proposals are adequate, just get HS2 built please.

Tell George not to worry about his furious constituents just get the cheque signed!

Yours faithfully