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London Borough of Culture

Bonkers Blog May 2017

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London Borough of Culture

8 May (Part 1) - A bit more waffle before BiB gets back to business

I was away all weekend and most of the blogging activity was pre-prepared. Now I am back starting my 31st year in Bexley I find there are lots of little things to attend to and I’m not sure where to start. My sister’s net connection being down may have to take priority.

Yesterday I went off on a largely off-topic tangent which probably went down like a lead balloon in some places but on the other hand it produced a few friendly responses. I have never been afraid to take on DIY jobs and I enjoy doing them - but maybe not as much as I used to - and refusing help is just not me, hence lots done for neighbours and the like. I have another job scheduled for about 4 p.m. this afternoon. Obviously not for the finger jabber who blew me out after I accidentally splashed water on his car.

Among the supportive messages - thanks everyone - was an enquiry about why this website is called Bexley-is-Bonkers. The reason is buried on some long forgotten page already but it is an easy one to answer. On 4th June 2009 when I was contemplating creating a website, Councillor John Davey was on EU election duty outside the polling station in Fossington Road, Belvedere.

He told me he considered road planning in Bexley was “Bonkers”. I like to be fair about these things, so in mitigation let me say I believe he was referring to TfL, then under Ken Livingston’s control. But that is where the name came from.

Creating a website - not a blog at that stage - moved from contemplation to reality when Andrew Bashford, Bexley’s Traffic Engineering Manager, told me a very big fib.

He said in writing that the road design Councillor Davey called “bonkers” was in full accordance with Transport Research Laboratory recommendations; when it was no such thing.

I know that because my son was head of the department which produced the TRL report and when he next visited confirmed to me that the road design was about as bad as it could be.

Not long ago I met one of Andrew Bashford’s underlings off-duty and on neutral ground. I knew who he was but he didn’t know me so I introduced myself. Quite likely he regretted it afterwards but Mr. Bashford’s colleague immediately blurted out “Andrew Bashford absolutely hates you. Something I regards as a bit of an accolade.

I like to think that knowing that there is always a risk that Council shenanigans will appear on the web makes BiB partly responsible for improving standards on Bexley Council. It’s a whole year since they last reported me to the police for nothing and with eight Bexley (and former Bexley) police officers under investigation for their part in covering Bexley Council’s crimes maybe they will not be so keen to tread that path in future.

I suspect Bexley Council also knows just how wide news of their activities can go which is why employees and Councillors have all been told not to talk to me. Ten days ago when I was taking photos in the street I was asked why. I said they were for Bexley is Bonkers and the reply was “OK I will take a look this evening”. No explanation of what BiB is was necessary.

Much the same thing again today. Someone who I know who looks at the blog very occasionally told me she asked a friend if she had seen Bexley is Bonkers and the reply was “everyone knows Bexley is Bonkers”.

I frequently feel like giving it all up but I suppose I can’t just yet. Mind you, much more of this waffle and readers will be driven away. There are more thoughts about the Erith & Thamesmead Tory dentist to come later and the reason why the new Assistant Chief Executive will be exactly what Bexley Council is looking for - but not a breath of fresh air unfortunately. I’m behind the times with the Crossrail photos too.

Right now, it’s the latest job for a neighbour and touch wood, I think my sister’s net connection is working again. A broken Netgear router by the looks of things. Good job I had given her a spare one.

 

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