The balloon goes up

I felt deeply ashamed to be English during the visit of the President of the United States to our country.  Regardless of who fills the office, we owe it to the office of that great country to pay respect and the sight of the howling mob in Woodstock, London and in Scotland as well as scattered across other parts of the United Kingdom was, in my view, an utter disgrace.

To hear all of the tripe directed at Donald Trump made me quite nauseous and I was disappointed that the BBC chose to make so much of it.  Media reporting only adds to the hype and probably encourages more of the scruffy left-wingers to ease themselves out of their comfortable chairs, put down their benefit giros, grab their protest banners and take to the streets.  However, the BBC’s coverage was as nothing when compared with the TV equivalent of the Morning Star.  I mean, of course, Channel Four news.

I had quietly hoped that the US secret service would have a marksman in Westminster with a small calibre rifle to take a pot-shot at the nasty balloon.  It deserved to be deflated in public as a nasty and tasteless form of protest.  However, I suspect a sense of decorum and concern for public safety prevailed!

If I had any consolation it was tinged with regret that the President’s visit had not been timed for the hunting season when it would have given the hunt antis a difficult decision as to whether to protest at lawful hunt activity or the visit of the President of the USA!

A minority of mainly left-leaning agitators has brought disgrace on our country but it is inevitable in a country that promotes freedom of speech under the law.  Just think what would have happened to the protestors if they lived in China or Russia and chose to take to the streets in opposition to government policy there!

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Save Adderbury – A poetic contribution …

I publish a  contribution from a local resident who lives, I think, to the west of the Sor Brook.  While perhaps not the height of literary excellence, I thought it worth an airing.

Oh to be in Adderbury now that summer’s here 
When the cuckoo and the idiots do both appear.
With cries of “no” to this and “definitely no” to that 
They know not where to throw their hat. 
Having been rejected by the electorate 
Democracy has let them down since they did not prevail 
Could it be that their message was lost in the mail?
While we are raising funds for library, school and steeple
So therefore have but little time for small minded people.

With apologies to Robert Browning and the Morris Men


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Adderbury Neighbourhood Plan Referendum Result

Results of the Adderbury Neighbourhood
Planning Referendum:

In answer to the question: “Do you Do you want Cherwell District Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for Adderbury to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?

Number cast in favour of a YES: 651
Number cast in favour of a NO:    58
Turnout 29.8%
More than half of those voting HAVE voted in favour of the Neighbourhood Plan

A pretty conclusive result with strong support for the Adderbury Neighbourhood Plan which includes development of the Milton Road site with a community facility and sports pitches.  Taken with the result of the Parish Poll last year, the village has indicated a clear direction of travel.

As previously stated and before any lawyers start to sharpen their quill pens and frame legal actions, I should state that my blog is written solely as an individual parishioner and does not seek to represent the views of any Adderbury body or institution.

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Voting in Adderbury Referendum on Thursday 21-Jun – Why Bother?

All Adderbury electors should have received a Polling Card for them to vote in a Referendum on the Adderbury Neighbourhood Plan.  It is on Thursday 21-Jun-18 from 7:00 am to 10:00 pm at the Methodist Church Hall.  This is a relatively new idea, intended to strengthen local democracy and to enable local communities to influence planning policies and decisions.

A huge amount of work has been put into developing the Adderbury Neighbourhood Plan and it has successfully been pulled, pushed and hauled through all of the bureaucratic hoops except this final one which is down to Adderbury voters. It is important for the Referendum to be well supported and, I am clear it needs to give clear and resounding support to the Adderbury Neighbourhood Plan.

The Plan will not prevent all development in Adderbury but it will strengthen the case for development that maintains the quality of Adderbury’s architecture and respects the environment.  The Plan includes a number of areas where development should be refused and we should surely all welcome this?

There does seem to be a movement from a few to reject the Plan for the sole reason that they hope it will prevent development at Milton Road.  This is surely the wrong reason for voting against a Plan that will protect all of the village, resist undesirable development and protect key sites within the village?  It feels like the House of Lords seeking to prevent Brexit despite the will of the people and, more locally, like a re-run of last year’s Parish Poll in in which the village voted decisively to support development of a community facility and sports pitches at Milton Road.  The Referendum is an opportunity to reaffirm that decision but it is much more than that, providing Adderbury with some positive planning guidelines and seeking to protect the village from future blots on the landscape.

If you want to learn more about the Neighbourhood Plan before voting on Thursday, here are two links that might help:

A short statement about the Plan

A link to the Plan on Cherwell District Council web site.

The Referendum asks the following question:

‘Do you want Cherwell District Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for Adderbury to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?’

I hope you will take the time to go to the Polling station and to vote YES.

Before any lawyers start sharpening their quill pens and framing legal actions, I should state that my blog is written solely as an individual parishioner and does not seek to represent the views of any Adderbury body or institution.

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Channel Four the Propaganda Channel

We generally watch the BBC national news at 6:00 pm and the Oxford news at 6:30 pm.  Increasingly politically correct, I fear and clearly pro-EU and anti-Brexit but, otherwise, fairly reliable for balance and objectivity.

The same cannot be said of Channel Four which follows.  I am afraid, this is the only alternative to the dreadful One Show which seems to feature badly dressed and, often, badly spoken nonentities from the worlds of drama, music and sport.  However, I would challenge Channel Four’s designation as a news programme.  It is not.  It is left-wing political propaganda where the questions are fed to mainly left-wingers to elicit the pro-Corby answer Channel Four wants people to hear.  We have had the Windrush issue for three nights running now as if nothing else had happened in the world.

It is time Channel Four News was re-classified as a party political broadcast for the Labour Party because that is all it is.  At least we would be limited to a maximum of 4 minutes 40 seconds!

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Two views on Facebook

My first view on Facebook is that of a good friend who lives in Bloxham:

Facebook for seniors.  To others of my generation who still do not and cannot comprehend why Facebook even exists, maybe try the following, as I am doing.  Here’s what I am doing to gain better understanding.   I am trying to make new friends without using Facebook but while applying the same principles.  Every day, I walk down the street and tell passers-by what I have eaten, how I feel at the moment, what I have done the night before, what I will do later and with whom.  I give them pictures of my family, my dead dog and of me gardening, taking things apart in the garage or fixing things, watering the lawn, standing in front of landmarks, driving around town, having lunch and doing what anybody and everybody does every day.  I also listen to their conversations, then give them the “Thumbs Up” and tell them I like them and it works!  I already have four people following me: Two police officers, a private investigator and a psychiatrist!

My second view on Facebook is my own experience:

I opened a Facebook account because it seemed the thing to do and provided the usual personal details.  After that, I logged on from time to time but never felt comfortable with the Facebook format.  I suspect I am slightly on the autistic spectrum.  I am very organised and highly structured in how I work and look at things.  I like everything in its place and tidy.  Facebook was always the reverse to me.  Highly unstructured and very untidy so I never really took to it.  It was also like LinkedIn where one is constantly badgered to join people’s networks.  I soon deleted LinkedIn because it simply became a total nuisance and I soon realised that many of the people asking me to join their LinkedIn network had absolutely no idea that LinkedIn had asked me to do this on their behalf.

More recently and after the Facebook scandal had surfaced I started to receive huge numbers of requests to be friends on Facebook from people I had never met.  I therefore decided to delete my Facebook account but even this proved quite difficult.  However, perseverance won through and I think I am now completely out of it and have no regrets.



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Beyond belief

Forgive me if I have got this wrong and relied too heavily on media reporting but it seems a 78-year old pensioner, Richard Osborn-Brooks, found his home invaded by two thugs both more than half his age and, I would guess, twice his strength who were burglars.  One of them had apparently armed himself with a screwdriver and forced the 78-year old at screwdriver point to the kitchen while the other thug went upstairs in search of loot.

Much to the surprise of the armed thug, I would suspect, Richard Osborn-Brooks took on the villain and apparently disarmed him.  In whatever struggle took place, it seems the armed thug received a wound to the upper body which subsequently proved fatal.  The second thug, a true mate of the armed one, fled the scene.

On arrival at the scene of an attempted armed robbery, the police apparently arrested Richard Osborn-Brooks upon suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) and subsequently changed the potential charge to murder.

In my view, Mr Richard Osborn-Brooks deserves a medal and not arrest.  He found two thugs in his own home, uninvited and apparently intending burglary.  One of them was armed with a lethal weapon.  Mr Osborn-Brooks at the age of 78 took on the armed robber and in the course of a struggle, the robber suffered a fatal wound.  In my view he got precisely what he deserved and risked when he decided to enter a private home with apparent intent to steal and to threaten.

Mr Osborn-Brooks has suffered five traumatic incidents in rapid succession:

  • finding his home invaded by burglars, one of them armed;
  • being manhandled by the armed robber and forced to go to his kitchen while the other villain went upstairs and Mrs Osborn-Brooks was apparently also in the house;
  • managing to disarm the armed robber and finding him wounded as a result, one must assume, of Mr Osborn-Brooks attempts to free himself;
  • suffering arrest by the police under suspicion of serious  crimes and
  • being release on bail, surely an indignity too far?

There is something wrong with our police and criminal law if a householder, finding armed robbers in his home, cannot take all reasonable action to frustrate their violent intentions.  The thug with the screwdriver is, in my view, entirely responsible for his own death.  Mr Osborn-Brooks deserves immediate and total freedom and a medal for his public spirited defence of his wife, home and liberty and for his sheer courage in taking on an armed thug half his age.

We have a serious problem in this country where rules have completely superseded common sense.  I have heard police excuses that arrest of Mr Osborn-Brooks was a necessary step in investigating the matter.  Yet again, what we have is police ticking the necessary boxes without a vestige of thought about the reality of this situation and the common sense solution.  It isn’t just the police although I think there are serious questions about the way in which they set their priorities.  The whole of our establishment seems to have become rules-dominated, risk averse and wholly unable to apply a little bit of gut instinct and common sense to a situation.

I hope Mr Osborn-Brooks is soon exonerated, able to enjoy life in his home again and I wait to see him in the next Honours List for bravery and services to criminal  justice.

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