May 042016
 4 May 2016  Posted by at 11:10 am Councillor Life Comments Off on Let’s get it straight, shall we?
Let's get it straight, shall we?

When I first heard an independent candidate was standing in my ward, North Reddish, I was really pleased. I thought, this is good for local democracy. It’s good for people to have choice at the ballot box. It’s good for the mainstream political parties to be challenged. But then I realised that this so-called “independent” candidate is a mouth-piece for a former North Reddish councillor* who has, in my opinion, never come to terms with his ousting. So I want to put the record straight and clear up any misunderstandings, misleading claims and downright lies currently being put about to

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Apr 262016
 26 April 2016  Posted by at 1:00 pm Councillor Life Comments Off on Tell me about it

My council casework comes in from all directions these days – calls to my mobile or landline, by text message, personal email account, council email account, in the street, on the doorstep, in the shop, on the bus, via facebook and twitter! Social media is like a very fast moving stream and it can be difficult to track who said what to whom, when they said it and where they said it. (Facebook’s search function still leaves a lot to be desired). So, I’ve made this handy page with its handy form for the good people of North Reddish to

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Jul 282013
 28 July 2013  Posted by at 9:36 am Other Stuff Comments Off on Why I locked my Twitter account

My stupid pride is making me write this. I can’t bear the thought of anyone assuming that I’m upset, frightened or in hiding when I’m not. I’m simply bored and irritated. Keeping your Twitter account unlocked, as most people do, is akin to keeping your front door open for anyone to wander in and have a chat or just hang about and listen to your conversations with other people. And that really is the best thing about Twitter. But occasionally you have to shut that door for a while because there’s too many unpleasant people in your front room looking

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Mar 052013
 5 March 2013  Posted by at 9:54 pm Councillor Life Comments Off on Budget speech

My first council budget meeting. My first council speech. My first heckling by Lib Dems and Tories. I’m sure there’ll be plenty more of that to come! Strangely, the Lib Dems interpreted what I had to say as a plea for more meetings and were aghast that a councillor might actually value scrutiny. Well, I didn’t come into local politics for the glamour of it all. Anyway, here’s what I had to say.  And very nervous I was too! “We’ll all agree that every penny counts in this age of enforced austerity which is why I’m surprised that Scrutiny, the

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Mar 032013
 3 March 2013  Posted by at 2:53 pm Councillor Life, Why I voted as I did Comments Off on Why I voted as I did: Marple Asda

“DC051300 – Cheadle And Marple Sixth Form College, Hibbert Lane, Marple  PDF 5 MB Redevelopment of Cheadle & Marple Sixth Form College’s Marple Campus including refurbishment of existing building on the Buxton Lane site and construction of new college buildings to provide 6,473 sqm of new educational floorspace, together with car parking and landscaping works, construction of synthetic floodlight pitch; and demolition of existing buildings on the Hibbert Lane site and erection of a class A1 store (3,651 sqm gross external) together with petrol filling station and associated highways, servicing and landscaping works.  The Committee is recommended to refuse planning permission.” Planning & Highways Regulation Committee decision on 1 March 2013: Refuse

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Jan 132013
 13 January 2013  Posted by at 5:52 pm Councillor Life 14 Responses »

SPLAT! A week of horrendous insomnia followed by a 5am alarm on Saturday saw an exhausted version of myself lumber on to a London-bound train for Councillor Camp at Facebook’s perky Covent Garden HQ. With my ipod on shuffle for the first time in a long time, the glorious diversity and discovery feeding the pleasure centre of my brain was fine preparation for the day to come. Councillors from all over England* of every political persuasion covering an age range from twenty somethings to switched on seventies gathered to talk about how to do digital better. A pleasant surprise was the mix

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Feb 162011
 16 February 2011  Posted by at 1:54 pm Other Stuff Comments Off on MANIFESTATION

Brought about entirely by the power of serendipity, I took a trip to the Sharp Project recently to see Keith Jobling, one of the project’s key instigators. I first met Keith way back in 1994 when we were both working with Tony Wilson. Factory Records was still in business and In The City was but a year old. I’d just started as a conference manager on the music event and Keith was doing this thing with him called ‘The Boot Room’. I didn’t really get it. Digital was another world and I’d not yet identified myself as someone who might

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