Northern and Grayling – An utter shambles – Heads need to roll!

If you thought our appalling train services run by Northern could not get any worse well you’re wrong because they are doing as failing becomes utter shambles!

This is Ormskirk Station with a train from Preston just arriving

Locally, the recently announced opening of the Ormskirk – Preston Line on a Sunday throughout the summer, due to the closure of Liverpool Lime Street, has been turned on its head as Northern have now said there will not be any trains running this Sunday – 10th June. What’s more those in the know seem to think that the promised Sunday service could well be a non-runner for more Sundays than just this coming one. Check before you travel on any Northern train as none of their services can be relied upon these days.

A little further afield South Lakes MP Tim Farron got an assurance earlier this week from Transport Secretary Chris Grayling in Parliament that he would not support an extension of the two weeks worth of cancelled trains on the Lakes Line to Windermere only for a few days later it to be announced that the cancellations were being extended!!!

It really is time for heads to roll in the railway industry for this utter shambles and Grayling should resign in shame himself for overseeing this mess and chaos. Northern Powerhouse Rail my foot it’s Northern Poorhouse Rail at the very best. We are being treated like second class citizens up north.

And as for the outgoing head of Network Rail getting a CBE! – see link below:-

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-44423311

A low wage culture? Well yes if you live outside the economically overheated South East

www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-43729508

The BBC has the article on its web site – see link above

With the exception of Norwich, Southend and Worthing all the other communities with low wages are in the industrial north. Turning to the highest paid towns in England they are all in the South East with the exception of Derby.

No government has taken radical enough steps to seriously address this imbalance and please don’t point to the Northern Powerhouse or Poorhouse, as I like to call it, because that is little more than a political sticking plaster to make it look like Government is addressing the issue.

A solution? Try to make Universal Basic Income work. It’s been tried in Canada and in some of the Scandinavian countries but it needs to be really tested as a radical solution here in the UK.

Transport Spending – Not much up north but are we surprised?

A Virgin Trains Pendolino train at Liverpool Lime Street Station.

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-42804842

The BBC has the story on its web site – see link above

The fact that the spending on transportation is so imbalanced is frankly no surprise. Of course government’s always over-egg what they are doing and the opposition always under-eggs what the same government is doing. As a rule of thumb the truth is usually somewhere in between.

But in this case we seem to have a reasonably credible assessment of what is going on and apart from it being no surprise it is also a disgrace. Now don’t get me wrong capital cities always require higher spending on infrastructure due to their position within any economy but for things to get so far out of balance is worrying even though it may well have been the case for generations and through governments of all colours.

Sucking more people and resources into the South East of England, as has been the consequence of government policy for many a year, has its big down side in that the monster needs feeding all the time and this is done by selectively starving the regions of the UK of similar investment. Yes of course the odd high profile and over-egged project slips through to try to keep the illusion of some form or parity but reality is always different.

Oh and what about the Northern Poorhouse, because that is what it is; Powerhouse indeed, how may were fooled by all that froth?

£300m for Northern Powerhouse Rail will go nowhere

To say that I was utterly and completely underwhelmed by the announcement of this ‘new’ money to assist with the so called Northern Powerhouse Rail project yesterday at the Tory Party conference is to put it politely.

£300m will go nowhere with a massive civil engineering project such as this

I knew I was right when the BBC said Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham had welcomed it – I would not want to be on the same page as Mr Burnham.

I must qualify as one of the North West Region’s greatest skeptics with regard to the Northern Powerhouse, or Northern Poorhouse as I like to call it. Just look at the Billions upon Billions of £’s spent on railways in the South East of England; it so dwarfs the tiny amounts being brushed off the Chancellor’s table in a northerly direction as to make us look like we are indeed being treated like inmates of a poorhouse.

No I’m sorry but I want to see investment into the North of England in the Billions of £’s from Government before I will join the likes of the Labour Mayor of Greater Manchester in welcoming what to date has been small beer monies at best.

Bootle – Yet more Civil Service jobs to be withdrawn!

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/closure-bootles-acas-office-see-12122910

acas

On the back of HMRC giving notice to quit to Bootle and Netherton ACAS has seemingly now joined the abandon Bootle movement of Civil Service jobs out of a Town that so obviously needs them. My last posting about the HMRC job losses is available via the link below:-

tonyrobertson.mycouncillor.org.uk/2016/05/07/bootle-back-to-those-huge-civil-service-job-losses-in-the-borough-of-sefton/

The HMRC jobs some 2,500+ are going into Liverpool whilst the much smaller number of ACAS jobs are moving to economically overheated Manchester!

What on earth was the point of putting Civil Service jobs into Bootle in the 1960’s, 1970’s and 1980’s simply to withdraw them all now? Does no one in Government give a fig for the more deprived and economically struggling communities in the north of England?

Is this all part of the Norther Poorhouse policy to further impoverish the towns and smaller communities of the north by pushing all the jobs and investment into the major northern cities? What good can come from such a policy?

One of my major concerns about about the development of City Regions is that exactly this sort of thing will continue to happen. What’s the point of Liverpool being successful, for example, if its surrounding Boroughs are asset stripped to achieve that. I despair I really do.

Northern Poorhouse – Leading Light Quits

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/northern-powerhouse-champion-lord-oneill-11928524

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above

Readers of this blog site will know how sceptical I am about the Northern Powerhouse, or Poorhouse as I call it. I have never felt it was much more than political froth and spin and have been amazed at how Labour politicians have been drawn into it. Was their following of it associated with the previous Northern Way of John Prescott?

Now its leading light (other than George Osborne of course) has quit, what future does it have?