BBC web site – ‘Fewer drivers using mobile phones when driving’ – Really!

I was somewhat surprised when I saw this article on the BBC web site because the evidence of by my eyes when out and about driving across Merseyside and beyond is that the problem is getting worse not better!


The number of times you come across a driver, usually male in my experience, with a phone held to their head whilst trying to drive ‘safely’ is far to often in my view.

Only a few days ago I was driving along Southport Road in Bootle when a chap all but lost control of his car at a roundabout whilst trying to negotiate it on the phone and driving with one hand. Only days before that I followed a chap from the Giro into Bootle and he was on the phone driving with one hand through 2 sets of traffic lights and 3 roundabouts!

Could it be that the Police are catching fewer drivers at this most dangerous practice of one armed driving whilst on the phone because there are less Police engaged in such activities? Getting better? No to my mind the problem is worsening.

Elected Mayor of Liverpool – More on those payments for no work

For those who would like to see more detail about this matter than the Liverpool Echo has published so far, a visit to Iain Brodie Browne’s Birkdale Focus web site is worth a bit of your time. Use the two links above to gain more detail:-

The situation seems to be one of Sefton Council Officers agreeing to the deal but then soon after the School in question, Chesterfield High, converted itself into an Academy and they found the deal unacceptable so terminated it.

There are clearly some big issues here about the use of public money, why the deal was signed off by Council Officers in the first place and whether any of the money can or should be claimed back by the School.

But the bottom line is why on earth did anyone think that spending public money like this was going to be seen to be acceptable to the public?

A subject that a determined local investigative journalist could do with getting to the bottom off and in doing so turn Sefton Council inside out.

An Irish Blessing as delivered by wonderful Maghull Wind Orchestra

Today saw the marvelous Maghull Wind Orchestra perform at the Palm House in Liverpool’s Sefton Park, a repeat of their performance there almost exactly a year ago.

Maghull Wind Orchestra in the wonderful setting of Sefton Park Palm House

Maghull Wind Orchestra in the wonderful setting of Sefton Park Palm House

This 74 piece band (of today) which has the ability to have over 100 members playing at any one time is a delight and I say that not just because Jen Robertson is a member. It is a unique community band which takes anyone who can play a wind instrument (although they do have a percussion section and a double bass) to whatever standard and they don’t have a membership fee.

Phil Shotton the MWO Conductor

Phil Shotton the MWO Conductor

My favorite tune that they play is called An Irish Blessing which was written for a brass or silver band to play. However so talented are MWO that one of their number has arranged it for for them and what a haunting tune it is that sends shivers down your spine.

The Top Brass, well those on the stage with many other below them and just as good too.

The Top Brass, well those on the stage with many others below them and just as good too.

I am not aware of a recording of An Irish Blessing on the internet from MWO so here is a silver band version. Bet it will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up:-

28th April 2015 – STOP PRESS:-

A MWO version is now available on youtube – see link below

The 3 photos are amongst my Flickr shots at:-

Liverpool – Carters memorial

Caters memorial

This is a great piece of artwork which is on Liverpool’s waterfront between the Merseyside Maritime Museum and the Museum of Liverpool. It was unveiled in 2010 by the Mayor of Liverpool.

My interest and attention was drawn to it via my wife who has been researching her family history. This research has led to the fact that a relative of her’s was a Liverpool Carter.

The May 2010 Liverpool Echo article – see link above – gives some background information to the artist who created it, how the money to was raised to fund the project and how important carters were to the docks of Liverpool in times gone by.

The photo is amongst my Flickr shots at:-

Right to Buy – An utterly wrong Tory policy

Cameron warned over right-to-buy

David Cameron has been warned by the Institute of Fiscal Studies that his proposed extension to the right-to-buy scheme risks worsening the housing crisis and damaging Britain’s public finances.

The IFS also warned that the measure risked further dividing communities into rich and poor areas. It added that previous pledges to replace every home bought under the existing right to buy scheme had not been followed through.

The Times newspaper ran this story

What Britain needs now is more social housing not less. Giving people a cheap deal to buy their social housing property simply takes out another much needed house from this sector of the housing market thereby reducing the supply of the very type of property we are most in need of!

Places like Maghull, Lydiate and Southport are hardly in need of more private housing stock which bizarrely our Labour-led Council is forcing upon us. It’s social housing that is required and it needs to be built on brownfield sites not on acre after acre of high grade agricultural land which we presently grow our food on.

Both to the left and right housing policy has gone utterly mad.

With thanks to the LGiU for the lead to this story.