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Showing content with the highest reputation since 20/06/19 in all areas

  1. 4 points
    Having been brought into the social media froth by the Bedlington labour group I think I should be allowed the right of redress. Looking at recent postings regarding the forthcoming East Bedlington Parish election it seems some are suggesting an almost malevolent Independent Party has been formed to suppress the democratic wishes of the electorate. As usual in these cases the truth is far more mundane! When first elected to County Hall the three independent candidates for Bedlington formed a group, not a political party, to impose ourselves onto the committee structure within County Hall. That meant we had to be given seats by ratio on the major committees as all ‘groups’ have to be awarded. This we believed best represented our wards and Town. Instead of possibly being frozen out of major committees we had to be included and we each took seats on committees which we felt best represented not only our constituents but our own past experiences and interests. That would seem quite sensible to me? There has also been a suggestion that party politics shouldn’t play a role within Parish level of government and indeed this was quite clearly written in one of the first drafts of the NALC guidelines for the new Parish’s created after local government reorganisation in 2009-2010. That was surreptitiously taken out before the guidelines were agreed and put in place! The question is who could possibly benefit, in my view certainly not the residents who would be asked to vote! One further thing to note is the plain fact that even at parish level votes were and probably still are being ‘whipped’ by political parties. That means party political elected councillors have to follow the orders they are given to vote certain ways on certain items of business. There is clear documented evidence of this even a video so let no one be naive enough to suggest this doesn’t happen! That to my mind says political appointees will look after the best interests of their chosen party before the best interests of their electorate. These are some of the reasons I stood as an independent candidate for NCC and why I think the sooner we get rid of party politics the better!
  2. 3 points
  3. 3 points
  4. 2 points
    As some of you may know, there will be a by-election for two vacancies on East Bedlington Parish Council. Both vacancies lie within the Bedlington East Ward. The election will take place on Thursday 4 July 2019. There are four candidates for the two positions, two Labour Party and two Independent candidates. As you would expect, being an Independent Councillor myself, I am fully supporting the two Independent candidates, Keith Scantlebury and Helen Bradford. I have known Keith for many years and he has always had an interest in his local area. He is currently Chair of Burnside Estate Residents Group, which has been instrumental in raising funds to enhance the lives of the residents and children that live there and has been so successful that they have seen a drop in the level of anti-social behaviour on the estate. He also sits on Bernicia’s Community Investment Panel and has been a regular attendee at the East Bedlington Parish Council meetings, so he has a good idea of what would be required. I have known Helen for less time but since I took over the Chair of the Friends of Gallagher Park two years ago she has served with me on that committee trying to make the park better for the community. She has been an active member in organising the planting of wild flowers and tree pruning to make the walking trails more accessible and she has also been very proactive in helping to raise funds that has enabled the construction of a new play area in the park, work which is underway currently. This is the play area, as some of you may recall, that the Labour-led East Bedlington Parish Council refused to support when asked for a contribution. Helen is currently employed with HMRC but also finds time to assist her partner with his motorcycle training school which is based here in Bedlington. Compare these two active members of the local community, who are funding their own campaigns, to the other candidates, who have just been chosen because they are party members. It’s not easy to put yourself forward and stand as an Independent candidate. I know from personal experience how difficult it can be to be up against a party machine and all the resources they have at their disposal, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. If you look at recent local elections in Bedlington, you’ll find that the national party hasn’t done all that well. Could it be that the public realise that it’s not about party politics but local issues that matter? There hasn’t been an election for a seat on East Bedlington Parish Council for ten years. It has been dominated by the Labour Party who have been more than happy to endorse the party line even at this level of politics. There should be no place for party politics at parish level and you can help change the dynamic of that council so that there are more independent thinkers to challenge the old guard. I am proud to throw my support behind these two hard working, community minded individuals. Let’s take the party out of local politics. Vote Independent on July 4. Vote for Helen Bradford and Keith Scantlebury.
  5. 1 point
    I know a Howarth from Manchester. It would quite amusing if they're related to Oliver here I've sent them the link.
  6. 1 point
    I must say you’ve got a lovely day for it – The Midsummer national holiday! I hope you’ve got your Maypole decorated and ready to be raised! You haven’t forgotten to practice the frog dance have you? Here’s how it goes: Have a lovely day!
  7. 1 point
    Sun on the dark side on the moon?
  8. 1 point
    Hi Dorothy,welcome to the forum! My elderly friend's Husband ran a sawmill , with her help,down at Guidepost,in the old days....she is now 92 years old,and still goes to the Christian Fellowship at the Coffin Chapel,in Bedlington town centre. She also helps to run the coffee morning and "drop-in",at the Coffin Chapel,every Thursday morning,and the craft class in the same afternoon,where she is also actively involved in putting up shoe boxes for the needy third world children,which just runs throughout the year..non-stop voluntery work! She is my Wife's friend really,but all of my Wife's friends are my friends also,and "Old Edna",is always telling us stories about the old days at the sawmill...how it was hard work. I will ring her as soon as I can,and ask her if she can enlighten me about your family history..she might just help ..she is extremely fit and active,with a memory like a hen! She can be found in the Coffin Chapel,every Thursday,and if you dropped in for a coffee and chat,in the morning,you will be pleasantly surprised at what a friendly,helpful bunch of people,they are,who volunteer to run the service for the people,and visitors,to our lovely town! From what Edna has told me,over the years,I always thought that her Family's sawmill was at the bottom of Sheepwash bank,adjacent to the Anglers Arms pub..somewhere in that vicinity. When you look at the size of the plantation on the old maps,it appears to me that a few people would have set up business in the timber trade,seeing as all the "new" collieries were being developed,most prominentally in that area being the Choppington "A"..[low pit],and Choppington "B" ..[the "High Pit"],where I worked as a young lad...and the pits depended on the timber for coalface and roadway supports underground. Million was the name of my old friend's family,and one of that family is on the visitor's information notice board,which stands at the former entrance to what was Choppington "B" colliery,now known as "Choppington Woods".[up Morpeth road past Alex Scott's garage,aboot a quarter of a mile on the left side of the road.] There are old historical pictures of Choppington collieries,and John Million is pictured along with his "Marra's"..[mates],underground,at the coalface,taken somewhere around the late 950's,I guess,cos I was a young heavy transport lad,aged 16 yrs,in 1960,and I clearly remember all the fellas in the pic,as looking exactly like they are,on the pic,when I worked there..at that time... John Million was the Brother of Tom Million,whe ran the sawmill ,so if the mill had been started by their Parents,and possibly THEIR parents..then we would be looking back to the mid-1800's. Can't promise owt,but aal dae wat a can ,Dorothy,and a hope ye can find oot a lot aboot your Family's roots!! Cheers,Bill.
  9. 1 point
    No apologies needed, Vic. There is light at the end of the tunnel but it's been a long tunnel to get through. A good laugh is always a good medicine!
  10. 1 point
    Talking to some village people last night :-
  11. 1 point
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