I HAD a letter from my MP Nicola Blackwood this morning. She also enclosed what I regard as a rather wooden letter from Chris McCarthy, from Oxfordshire County Council.
In case you haven’t been following RustyPoleGate – a parking post outside my house is very rusty. I’d offered to paint it in rainbow colours, at my own expense, but apparently this is a criminal offence under Section 132(1) of the Highways Act 1980. So here we go. ⇓
Unusually, in our experience, the normally *very* transparent Oxford City Council has decided to delay replying to two FOI (freedom of information) requests and so is potentially breaking the law.
On the 14th of October 2014, we asked about Oxford’s surveillance of peoples’ bins after we got a snottogram from a functionary – you can read our request here.
Then, being sort of IT biased, we made a request of the cost of IT during the calendar year 2013. That request has been delayed too. You can read that request here.
Finally, we asked Oxford City Council the cost of hiring IT firm Capita to try and cut down the number of people claiming a 25 percent discount because they live alone. We received a letter from said Capita saying if we didn’t reply, Oxford City Council reserved the right to knock off the discount. Fortunately, the letter was in 14 point Tahoma, so we could just about read it with a magnifying glass.
We haven’t had a response to that question either.
Transparency, through a glass darkly. We have emailed the City Council meisters in charge of the requests. Maybe they haven’t had the influenza immunization yet.
I AM NOT entirely sure the venerable Oxford Mail got the whole story about this, but hey, WTF. We only live here. ♥
I HAVE GOT quite a lot of time for Susanna Pressel, Labour politician of this yard, let me tell you. Never lend her your secateurs though, if you want your cotoneasta to stay untrimmed.
I understand she is a dab hand at pool, which she used to play at the currently closed The Kite, and deffo she is responsive to the locals when we ask her a question. She was, for example, a heroine in our campaign against The Wall between numbers 19-41 Mill Street. That is currently being pre-fabricated, much to the annoyance of badgers and other wild critters.
Pressel is up for re-election on the 22nd of May next, and as you can see from the blurb above, has quite a track record. I don’t know which two schools she is governor of, though but. There are certainly more than two schools in the Jericho and Osney ward.
But I will never, ever vote for her Labour colleague, a Mr Colin “cycle clips” Cook. Ever. ♥
I GET a lovely leaflet from those lovely people who opposed the Port Meadow development. You can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org, although I’m not sure if the lasses and lads are aware that Google on gmail monitors every email in and out.
There are some fab quotes on the leaflet. Colin Cook, a Labour councillor, describes the whole thing as “a storm in a teacup”. City council leader Bob Price says: “It is difficult to see precisely what is getting people so exercised.” Planning minister Nick Boles, MP, says: “A disgrace… one of the worst designs I’ve seen in the last 10 years.”
Now there is damage that needs to be undone, although some damage in our opinion at Volesoft is terminal. Although by nature of a leftish stance, we will never vote for our councillor Colin Cook ever again, despite his lovely cycle clips. We are even considering not voting for lovely Susanna Pressel, even though she is slightly leftish too. We at Volesoft think the Labour controlled Oxford City Council needs some Ex-Lax… ♦
Ahead of the Austrians coming to Mill Street – next week – the scaffolding is going up. If there is a god at the bottom of the gardens between numbers 19 to 41 it has to be Jason Thacker.
To look on the bright side, once the Wall has been built, we won’t be able to take a snap of the extremely ugly Said ziggurat.
Oh, by the way, the blackbird is still nesting happily in the tuti puti shed halfway down Nathistan. ♦
There are quite a lot of people aged over 40 live here in Oxford Town. So when Oxford City Council delivered its schedule of wheelie bin pick ups, I did a straw poll.
100% of the people I surveyed could neither (a) read the small print on the wheelie bin instructions and (b) understand what Oxford City Council was on about.
Perhaps the Council could hire professionals who could (a) string a sentence together and (b) realise that if print is too small, no one over the age of 40 could possibly read it without an electron microscope. Oh, and BTW, Oxford City Council, not everyone who lives here is on the world wide wibble. ♣