Saturday, 31 May 2008

I love photography

What do you think of these two:

Church, Home and Country.


A quiet posh wedding

And where does one have quiet posh weddings .... Windsor Guildhall of course.

In the quiet grandure of the Guildhall, Windsor where Prince Charles married Camilla, we witnessed the marriage of Marcia and Mike, and jolly posh it was too. They were married by the same lady that performed Charles service, and Elton John's. So it was extra posh! And it gets posher .... they had a "celebrity" photographer. I am hoping to spoil the money they were going to make selling the exclusive to Hello Magazine by publishing my own photos here!

I call this photographic masterpiece "cutting the cake". Married less than a day, and already the knives are out.

Linda under the professional eye of the "other" photographer.

Friday, 30 May 2008

A Fuel Plan!!

See what you think and pass it on if you agree with it. We are hitting £1.26 a litre in some areas now, soon we will be faced with paying £1.30 a ltr. Philip Hollsworth offered this good idea:

This makes MUCH MORE SENSE than the 'don't buy petrol on a certain day campaign that was going around last April or May! The oil companies just laughed at that because they knew we wouldn't continue to hurt ourselves by refusing to buy petrol. It was more of an inconvenience to us than it was a problem for them. BUT,who ever thought of this idea, has come up with a plan that can really work.Please read it and join in!

Now that the oil companies and the OPEC nations have conditioned us to think that the cost of a litre is CHEAP, we need to take aggressive action to teach them that BUYERS control the market place not sellers. With the price of petrol going up more each day, we consumers need to take action. The only way we are going to see the price of petrol come down is if we hit someone in the pocket by notpurchasing their Petrol! And we can do that WITHOUT hurting ourselves. Here's the idea:

For the rest of this year DON'T purchase ANY petrol from the two biggest oil companies (which now are one), ESSO and BP. If they are not selling any petrol, they will be inclined to reduce their prices. If they reduce their prices, the other companies will have to follow suit. But to have an impact we need to reach literally millions of Esso and BP petrol buyers. It's really simple to do!!

Now, don't wimp out at this point... keep reading and I'll explain how simple it is to reach millions of people!!I am sending this note to a lot of people. If each of you send it to at least ten more (30 x 10 = 300)... and those 300 send it to at least ten more (300 x 10 = 3,000) ... and so on, by the time themessage reaches the sixth generation of people, we will have reached over THREE MILLION consumers! If those three million get excited andpass this on to ten friends each, then 30 million people will have been contacted! If it goes one level further, you guessed it... ..THREE HUNDRED MILLION PEOPLE!!!Again, all You have to do is send this to 10 people. That's all.(and not buy at ESSO/BP) How long would all that take? If each of us sends this email out to ten more people within one day of receipt, all 300 MILLION people could conceivably be contacted within the next 8days!!! Acting together we can make a difference . If this makessense to you, please pass this message on.

PLEASE HOLD OUT UNTIL THEY LOWER THEIR PRICES TO THE 69p a LITRE RANGE. It's easy to make this happen. Just forward this email, and buy your petrol at Shell, Asda, Tesco, Sainsburys, Morrisons Jet etc. i.e. boycott BP and Esso

Thursday, 29 May 2008

Cllr Parker keeps abreast of parking issues

At 10.30 this morning Cllr Parker ( my fellow senior councillor) received a very agitated telephone call from the Breast Cancer Screening Unit that services the Farnborough area every 2 to 3 years. A member of her staff had visited the parking office as usual to collect a free parking pass for 2 car owners only to be told "THERE IS A NEW SYSTEM AND THEY HAVE TO PURCHASE A SMART CARD".
Cllr Parker immediatley contacted the Cheif Executive who assured Cllr Parker it will be resolved. Apparently the parking office did not know who the councillors were for the area in question - we must remidy that!!
Well done Cllr Parker - working all year round not just at election time, and supporting Breast Cancer Screening.

Keep Watch - Door to Door con man?

ON 28th May 08 17:15 (5.15pm) A male mid 30's Dark short hair Blue rain jacket called at an address in Aldershot - He held card up explaining that he is Polish and deaf and wants to sell paintings.
The lady reporting this thought it was a bit odd the way he behaved.
Should this person call on you PLEASE contact the police so this male can be checked out.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Responsible shoppers in Aldershot and Farnborough who find a litterbin for disposing of their rubbish will be rewarded as part of Rushmoor Borough Council’s ‘bin it to win’ promotion.

Members of the council’s community patrol team will be handing out colourful postcards as a thank you to people seen using a bin. Each postcard gives the holder a chance to enter a free prize draw to win tickets and vouchers for leisure activities across Rushmoor.

Helen Edwards, Contracts Services Manager at Rushmoor Borough Council said: “The ‘bin it to win’ campaign is an opportunity for us to thank the majority of people who dispose of their litter responsibly and show that they are proud of Rushmoor on a daily basis. We will be handing out the postcards across the borough during the build up to Victoria Day in Aldershot town centre on Saturday 21 June when the prize draw will take place.”

The top prizes are family tickets worth more than £50 to the Princes Hall pantomime, Peter Pan. Also up for grabs is a family ticket to the Rushmoor Fireworks Spectacular on Saturday 8 December and tickets for a family swim and bowling at Farnborough Leisure Centre. Also on offer is a year’s free subscription to the council’s garden waste recycling service and a family ticket to Aldershot Lido.

Friday, 23 May 2008

Flat advert from KPI Farnborough

The redevelopment of Farnborough town centre has taken a major step forward this week with the arrival on site of the new residential Sales and Marketing Suite.

It is located at Firgrove Court which is adjacent to the town centre site and once complete will incorporate a stunning two bedroom show apartment that will provide local residents and potential purchasers with the first glimpse of the high quality design and specification of the new homes at The Meads. This exciting new residential development is being delivered as part of Key Property Investments’ (KPI) £80 million regeneration of the town centre.

Jon Hall, Residential Sales and Marketing Director for KPI said: “It is fantastic to see the Sales and Marketing Suite moving on to site as it marks the next milestone in KPI’s commitment to delivering this exciting regeneration project. It will take some weeks to fully install the sales suite and show apartment, but once complete local residents will receive an exclusive preview of the floor plans and quality specification the apartments will offer purchasers.”

The residential development within the new town centre has been named Centrus at The Meads and will comprise 115 stylish one, two and three bedroom apartments launching in July.

The scheme is part of the wider regeneration of Farnborough town centre that will span 14 acres and will provide the local community with 30 new shop units, a new Sainsbury foodstore and new leisure facilities including a Vue Cinema, Travelodge Hotel and Gala Bingo.

The Meads and Centrus are being delivered by Key Property Investments (KPI), a joint venture between St Modwen Properties PLC and Salhia Real Estate Company.

For further information, please contact Natasha Ley or Rowena Collins on 020 7025 7500.
Or email

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

Spoken to a call centre recently

This is India - it's where you often call when you have a technical problem with your computer.

Council urges caution over limos

With the end of term fast approaching and with it the annual school ‘prom’ or summer ball, Rushmoor Borough Council is warning parents booking transport for their hopeful prom kings and queens to ensure the vehicle, driver and operator are properly licensed.

As with black cabs and private hire vehicles, stretch limousines, including stretched 4x4 vehicles, their drivers and booking agents are legally required to have a special licence issued by the Council, parents are warned. In fact, the rule applies to any hire vehicle that can carry eight or less passengers and comes with a driver.

This is to make sure the vehicles are safe and their drivers are suitable and insured. Limousines are made in the United States and only licensed there for three to five years, after which time they are shipped over to the UK and Europe. These types of vehicles need to be checked regularly by an authorised garage to make sure they meet mechanical and safety standards. Some limousines can carry more than eight passengers and these must also be licensed, but as Public Service Vehicles with the local Traffic Commissioner.

Drivers and operators also have to have enhanced Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and other suitability checks before they are issued with licences.

John McNab, Environmental Health Manager, advised: “When you’re booking transport check that the booking operator has a licence number. You can then confirm this number with the Council’s licensing team on 01252 398855. On the night, the driver will also be able to show you his or her licence, licence plate and driver’s badge.”
Cllr Clifford says " make sure your children are in safe hands - do not assume anything. Our young people are out for a good time after a lot of hard work, the school proms are always well organised and safe - lets make sure they get there and back safely too."

Town Centre - Road Closure

The section of Westmead from Victoria Rd to Northmead at the rear of the Princes Mead shopping centre must close for the installation of major services to the new Kingsmead redevelopment.

As a consequence traffic wanting to access Westmead/Northmead will be diverted via Farnborough Rod, Meudon Avenue and Solatron Road into Northmead via the Princes Mead car park service road which will remain open on market days.

Princes Mead 'B' car park will remain unaffected, but regarding 11/13 Westmead we will close the entrance and put a new one in further 'around the bend' and also create an access point from our car park into the Barclays car park for their staff. This will keep the car park open.

The period of works will be from Monday 30 June to Friday 8 August

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

How to create an empty seat on a busy train

Women's Liberation has won the day - my proof is in the picture above. Thursday I caught the 8.45am from Farnborough to Waterloo for a Local Government Conference entitled "Power to the People"

In my carriage I found a seat as it was not full when I got on at Farnborough. However, the 12 seats in my carriage were inadequate for the 22 people that were in it by the time we left Brookwood Station. Looking up I saw a woman in her late 30's early 40's standing swaying from side to side reading a paper. Another two women were standing by the door, and two had already managed to find seats.

Terrible I thought - I must stand and offer this lady reading the paper and coughing a seat. I stood. "please take my seat" I said confident she would be grateful. To my horror, my offer was received with embarrassment "No thank you she quietly replied". "No, I insist" came my retort thinking that sometimes what women say is not what they really mean! This time her reply was more firm and clear - "No thank you, I prefer to stand thank you".

Well, now I was on my feet, I was determined my act of chivalry was not wasted. "Well I am not siting down while there are ladies standing" I announced to the carriage, who were all now desperate to avoid eye contact with the loony that had just got up from his seat. So very English I thought later was my announcement and their response.

The chilling fact was that none of the three women standing would take my seat. So I stood away from my seat, expecting one of the three to make a move. Not a chance. The seven men standing also chose to avoid the seat. So the seat was left empty, vacant, unemployed in a packed carriage all the way to Waterloo. And the seat and I not only averted the glance of the ladies of the carriage, but all the men too.

Power to the people? Often the seat of power looks very attractive, but when we get a chance to take it, like my train carriage, some would much rather someone else took it.

Monday, 19 May 2008

UN Survey

A worldwide survey was conducted by the UN. The only question asked was:

Would you please give your honest opinion about solutions to the food shortage in the rest of the world? The survey was a huge failure,
In Africa they didn't know what 'food' meant,
In India they didn't know what 'honest' meant,
In Europe they didn't know what 'shortage' meant,
In China they didn't know what 'opinion' meant,
In the Middle East they didn't know what 'solution' meant,
In South America they didn't know what 'please' meant,

And in the USA they didn't know what 'the rest of the world' meant!!!

Wednesday, 14 May 2008

Farnborough Airfield Consultation.

TAG Aviation, the operator of Farnborough Airport, is intending to carry out a four-week public consultation on an Issues Paper and associated questionnaire, the response to which will help them in drawing up a draft Masterplan for the future of the airport up to 2018. The initial 'Issues' consultation is due to commence on 20 May and there will be a link to the web page from the Rushmoor home page where you can respond to the questionnaire.
Following analysis of the responses and background work that TAG has commissioned on local economic impact, transport, safety and noise, the airport operator will in September publish for consultation a draft masterplan for the future of the airport. Following on from this stage a final masterplan will be drawn up.
Airport masterplans are set out in the Government's Aviation White Paper, and while airports of Farnborough's size are not required to carry them out TAG see it as good practice. The masterplan is completely separate from the Council's Area Action Plan for the Airport, although the results of TAG's background studies will be considered by the Council and its specialist consultants. An 'Issues and Options' consultation for the Airport Area Action Plan and Core Strategy is scheduled for October.

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Another successful "elected" Mayor cuts crime

Home of the 'Robocop' mayor sees crime down 20% since 2002

New statistics show crime is down in Middlesborough, where one-time 'Robocop' Ray Mallon has been mayor since 2002.
Before his election as Mayor of Middlesbrough, Mallon was a pioneering police chief, known as "Robocop", and was the most vocal advocate of 'zero tolerance' police techniques. The former Detective Superintendent Mallon vowed to "take back the streets'' from the criminals and to slash crime in Middlesbrough by 15 per cent.
Mallon aimed to achieve this with a 90-strong force of street wardens, Britain's biggest single community protection force.
Now Home Office figures show that since 2002 - the year Mallon was elected mayor - the community has seen a 25 percent drop in crime. Significant declines have been seen in 'robbery of personal property,' which has reduced by 65 percent over the past four years, and 'theft or unauthorised taking of a vehicle,' which has seen a 61 percent reduction.
The Safer Middlesbrough Partnership now aims to achieve a further eight percent crime reduction over the next year and the organisation is putting in place a new Community Safety Plan to help achieve this.
For the rest of this news item from the Northern Echo click

Saturday, 3 May 2008

Only a bafoon would underestimate Boris.

Londoners did the right thing - and I think the majority did it for the right reason. The acceptance speech demonstrated immediately that Boris is very much in tune with London and aware of the mandate and responsibility he now has, and one of the most gracious and humble acceptance speeches I have ever heard from a politician.

He has the political stature and big personality that our City deserves, and it is great to see local Government getting its rightful place at last. It is interesting to note that David Cameron MP only got 26,571 votes to become an MP compared to Boris who got 1,168,738 - over a million. This begs the question - why as a modern democracy do we not have a National election for prime Minister? Is it right that only a small Oxfordshire constituency gets to vote on the prime Minister?

Anyway - great news that Boris is Mayor of London, and I hope we see more elected Mayors throughout the Country, and who knows, maybe one day here in Rushmoor.

Friday, 2 May 2008

Conservatives move forward in Rushmoor

St Peter's Polling Station - Empress

We had a very good day yesterday in the Borough Elections, tinged with sadness at the loss of councillor Nigel Baines seat. Nigel was our Planning Chairman and a distinguished councillor who had served on the Cabinet and in a variety of positions - and a pillar of the local community in North Camp. I will miss him and wish him well.

Looking good for Gareth

Despite this "freak" loss, Rushmoor Conservatives were otherwise euphoric. We took two Liberal seats very decisively in WestHeath and Cove and Southwood. And held onto the two targeted seats of St John's and Grange where we defended and returned three Conservatives including the Council Leader.

Watching the votes counted at the "Empress" table. Everyone looking worried ... except Chris who has obviously just had a pleasant thought, or is ahead of the others counting. Note: Leader and Deputy Leader in the background who have noticed that Cllr Parker has crossed the line (a white taped mark over which observers cannot pass)

Here in Empress we won again by a huge majority with Gareth getting more votes than anyone else in Rushmoor (1158 votes). More importantly, we gave vital aid and assistance to St John's, Grange, and WestHeath. So I am extremely proud of the work put in by the Empress Conservative Campaign Team, which included some new members that made a really valuable contribution especially Chris Griskell who has been an absolute star and is our new membership secretary.

For full results go to

The Council make up is now:

  • Conservative - 30
  • Liberal Democrat - 7
  • Labour - 5