I WRITE this letter not to get at any political party, group or individual but in an effort to try to get a better understanding of the finer points of politics.
In Saturday’s Examiner it was announced that the Greens and the three Independents of Holme Valley North are to combine to form a new group called the Valley Independents (Examiner, ‘New alliance formed on Kirklees Council’).
They will work together but will not be subject to a party whip.
Now this opens up some interesting questions in my mind.
Clr Tony Brice is now the only remaining Independent in Kirklees without a group or party. I will bring this point up at end of letter.
Now that this amalgamation of the two parties has been decided by the new joint leaders and other members of this new party, could I ask the following questions;
The idea that the independent members of Holme Valley are now Independent is now open to question. Under this new group system they are now surely Valley Independents (Independent member), whereas the Green Councillors are Valley Independents (Green members)?
By calling themselves the Valley Independents, they are restricting their sphere of influence to below that of Kirklees, to that of South Kirklees only.
Does this mean that they have to give up voting rights in areas they do not seem to have interest in?
Is it legal to apply for a job and then tell the people who hired you that you only wish to be known and work for a limited part or section of the job, or is the actual name of Valley Independent ill-conceived or in fact just a ruse?
Clr Tony Brice, Independent councillor for Lindley, is now the only councillor in Kirklees who can rightfully claim to be an Independent. Thus forming a party of one.
This, by the rules of Kirklees, makes him the leader of a party of less than six members and even though it has not been mentioned, he is also entitled to £3,684 party leaders pay. Or am I mistaken?
Catch 22 policies
I’D like to know how Kirklees’ new Green and Valley Independents group squares its policy of “protection of the countryside from industrial development” with that of “supporting wind turbines”.
By the usual political double-think presumably.
No longer independent
I THINK the best person to serve as a councillor is someone who has the best interests of their constituency at heart.
Politics plays no part in how to run a library, where to put street lights and how best to promote a town or village centre. The policies of the Labour, Conservative or Liberal Democrat party surely do not stretch to how best to fill in potholes.
So what is the purpose do the new ‘party’ of Indepdendents? Surely they’re removing their unique selling point and selling out like the rest of them.
Local councillorship is about serving your community, each ward will have different needs, best represented by someone who lives there and knows those needs, not someone part of a political group with its own agenda.
Expensive hot air
ON Friday afternoon, I went to have a blood sample taken at the Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and was, frankly, disgusted at the over-heated temperatures in the staircase and corridor leading to the path lab.
The waiting room was unbearable, so that some patients were waiting in the corridor where they could at least open some windows.
I commented to the woman on reception that I didn’t know how she managed to work in those temperatures; to which she replied, ‘I don’t; I have a fan where I usually work’.
It is more understandable to have the heating up on the wards, but completely unnecessary in corridors, staircases and waiting rooms.
There is no wonder the NHS is forever claiming to be short of money – they’re wasting it all on heating, most of which, I have to say, was escaping through the open windows.
If all the hospitals in the UK are wasting heat like this, there’s no wonder we’re suffering global warming.
THE 2012 Olympic Torch will reach Huddersfield in June and, if I may say it, it’s going to be as near to the Olympic Games as the majority of Yorkshire folk will get.
It’s pricey enough getting to London on the train, then there would be your accommodation, food, transport to and from the stadium, and for a family of four, best re-mortgage the house.
That would be a marathon in itself paying it back.
As for watching it on TV! I would sooner watch the Epilog.
So, am I a fan of the Olympic games?
I think the vast amount of money spent on it could have been put to better use for the country.
It’s the equivalent of a family packing in their jobs, and planning an expensive holiday, while owing back payments on their home.
Bad house keeping.
SEEING the initial coverage of the Olympic Torch Relay really does create a feel-good factor.
People will rightly complain about the cost of the London 2012 Olympics, but this is a great opportunity to bring some cheer and positivity to a country with very little to look on the bright side for.
This summer with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the Olympics, Wimbledon, and maybe a little hope for the national football team, should be the chance for communities to get together and celebrate positive events.
It’s better to look on the bright side rather than the dark one.
NOW the dust from the local elections has settled, it is high time the Lib Dem’s assessed their national support for the present austerity measures that will bring untold misery to thousands of our UK citizens during 2013 with the implementation of the “Universal Credit” another word for savage cuts to our Social Security Welfare system!
But since the days of Margaret Thatcher (the lady is not for turning) these austerity measures are now a convenient excuse to implement the policy on the public masses.
Indeed, having taken early retirement due to ill-heath my already disgraceful public pension that I have paid into the system since the age of 16 is to be cut by 50% since the abolition of Invalidity Benefit, and I have been informed from February 2013 my payment will now cease.
Meanwhile, further cuts to Housing Benefit subsidies are already seeing hundreds in London possibly homeless and many thousands under threat throughout the UK.
But of course the Lib Dems and Nick Clegg MP continue to support this ill-devised policy when the people of Europe (especially Greece) have said enough is enough, austerity is not working, millions are unemployed and there must be a better way.
Notwithstanding, we have a Prime Minister and Chancellor who apparently could not give a monkeys about working people (unemployed or not) and the social carnage of this country continues unabated by a Lib Dem coalition that was nearly annihilated within Kirklees, as the Examiner article by Barry Gibson last week clearly stated.
So these elections must be a wake-up call for the Lib Dems and they must restore the dignity and individuality of the party or be tarred with the same Tory brush for a very long time to come!
I AM researching the origins of Scottish international cricketers.
One of our players, whose details have escaped us so far, is an Albert Johnson who played for Scotland in 1907 when engaged as professional at Kilmarnock CC.
Prior to that, we know he was professional at Aberdeenshire between 1901 and 1906, having been engaged on the recommendation of Schofield Haigh.
I believe that Albert was a native of Meltham, born around 1880. There was certainly an Albert Johnson from Meltham who was professional at Huddersfield CC in 1900 and I suspect this is the man who came to Scotland the following season.
I am hoping that some of your readers might be able to confirm my feelings about Albert’s origins and also shed some light on what happened to him in later life.
I have found his family in various censuses up to 1911 and know that he was the son of John Johnson and Elizabeth Green.
He had four brothers and two sisters including Charles, who married Marion Taylor, George (Mary Armstrong) and Francis Ann (John Shaw).
If anyone has information about Albert, I’d be very grateful to receive it.
firstname.lastname@example.org, 23 Ramsay Street, Broughty Ferry, Dundee, DD5 2SE